Even though the San Francisco Giants didn’t make it to the post-season in 2011 or 2013, it seems to hurt much worse this year than it did before. I’m not sure why.
Maybe it’s because we all had this feeling that this year we could break out of the even year mold we seem to be locked into with Giants fans getting on board the “Let’s Get Odd” campaign. Or it could be because whenever things went south for the Giants, they came back harder, faster, stronger. Or maybe we were inspired by some of the new players on our team–whether home-grown or newly acquired–who kept providing sparks of brilliance.
Or maybe it was this hard the other years, I’ve just blocked it from my memory. All I know is I miss Giants baseball.
When the season started, we had a new left fielder, Nori Aoki, who quickly found his way to the top of the lineup and started setting the table like he was the Martha Stewart of the baseball diamond—and he used the good china.
Joe Panik returned to second after establishing himself last season as the go-to infielder, with amazing fielding and great hitting. This season he turned himself into an All∗Star second baseman, and along with Brandon Crawford formed the deadly double play dealing duo known as “Crawnik”. Together, they took their show to the All∗Star game.
At the beginning of the season, Giants fans were heartbroken and dismayed when Pablo Sandoval, the Giants beloved “Kung Fu Panda” chose Boston over San Francisco. Most Giants fans figured we were doomed at third base without him. Enter Casey McGehee–a kid who literally grew up in the Giants backyard–Santa Cruz. It was exciting to see a local kid get a shot. But Casey didn’t work out and he turned the hot corner over to Matt Duffy.
The Duff Man, a nick-name he picked up in high school, didn’t take long to win the hearts of the Giants faithful. Fans thoroughly and quickly forgot about Sandoval, which was pretty easy when he made a snarky statement about his former team, and they rallied for Duffy to remain the every day third baseman. Duffy found his way to the short list for rookie of the year, and played in every game after the All∗Star break.
With the Giants roster alternating between the starting lineup, the concussion DL and the regular DL, nobody can fault them for coming in second. In fact, coming in second was a major accomplishment given all the curve balls the Giants took this season. They should all be proud–especially Bochy–of where they landed at the end of the season.
And even though we didn’t make the post-season, I’m still watching baseball–here’s what’s happening so far:
The National League pennant race ended very quickly. The Mets swept the Cubs, and just like that–Back to the Future II went back to being the second installment of a three movie franchise that isn’t as good as the original that started it all. It was on its way to being famous on its own as the movie that had the Cubs winning the Fall Classic in 2015.
As hot as the Cubbies were, the Mets were even hotter. And their second baseman, Daniel Murphy? He’s on fire. During the play-offs I suggested he was on his way to NLCS MVP–I love it when I’m right. Murphy looks like he might be the answer to the annual post-season question: who will emerge as this year’s post-season hero?
The American League finished their run for the pennant last week, with the Royals taking the honors for the second year in a row. The Royals quickly jumped to a two-game lead, but Toronto showed signs of life when they took Game 3. It was like a see-saw: Game 4 to the Royals, Game 5 to Toronto. The Royals shut it down in Game 6, taking the Fall Classic back to Kansas City. The only thing missing is the Giants.
World Series play begins Tuesday evening—5:00 PM Pacific. I’ll be cheering for the Mets–along with my cousin Brandon and my friend Doug. Go aMazins! I know it’s not the Giants, but they are our little half-brother, and…