THE San Francisco Giants Blog

Trying to Get to 1.5 Out

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 18, 2014

While we rest up today, I call on the Cubs to rise up and do what they did for us back in 2010.

The good news: The Dodgers have the worst VMI number on the board today (-21.73).

The bad news: They are facing T. Wada who is just not a very good pitcher.

If you want to learn more about the fascinating impact of visual memory index on hitters and pitchers, check out this site:

http://www.baseballvmi.com/fantasy-baseball-index-sports-weather

I am going to trust in guys like Javier Baez and Jorge Soler to stay hungry and focused, not get intimidated by Zach Greinke, and do enough to beat the reeling Dodgers like the drum that they are…..

On Second Thought…….

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 17, 2014

I hadn’t stopped to think about the impact of the Ryu injury, but it could be a big deal. The Dodgers are going to come out of Colorado like most teams, with a chewed up pitching staff. Then they have to go to Chicago, a team filled with a bunch of young, strong power hitters who are looking to make a name for themselves, not quit on the season.

Two day games today and if all goes right we’re two games out? With a Dodger team that now has only 2 reliable starting pitchers?

This isn’t over……

Stuck. Again.

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 16, 2014

Good day for a Peavy start. He’s one of the only pitchers I trust these days.

The Giants have hit another patch of quicksand. When I was a young lad and watching Gilligan’s Island and Batman regularly, I would worry a lot about quicksand. It seemed to always be quite the problem on those shows. I worried about how it would impact my life as I got older. Turns out quicksand wasn’t something I needed to worry much about as an adult.

But it’s a big deal in the Giants season. They’re stuck in it right now. And the season hangs in the balance.

Stalled Pennant Drive

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 15, 2014

This weekend sucked for Bay Area sports. I’m still doing a slow burn over that pathetic Niner game that was gift wrapped for the Bears. And after we took the first game of the series 9-0 I had dreams of a sweep. 17-0 was a quick wake up call and Kershaw is starting to piss me off. And what’s up with Puig sucking against every other team in the NL West except the Giants?

Gotta re-start the drive tonight in Arizona but I’m not gonna lie, I’ve got a bad feeling about this…..

Game Time Thread

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 14, 2014

9-0 and then 17-0. Two weirdo games that you really can’t make anything of except each team won a game and each team lost one.

Kershaw v Yuzzie-Pet today…

Best Win of the Year

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 13, 2014

Like most of you, I’m still living off the high of that game last night. Easily my favorite game of the year. It wasn’t just a W, it was an *in your face* win. It was an clear announcement that this isn’t over yet. And getting a win to start the series might take off any pressure that would have been on had we lost and been forced to beat Grienke and Kershaw to take the series….

It’s really amazing. No Belt. No Morse. No problem. This September run is so different from 2010 and 2012 but it has a great feel to it.

Can’t wait to watch the rest of the month unfold…..

Wanting To Be More Than A Wild Card

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 12, 2014

There are a lot of games that, on paper, don’t really interest me.

Tonight is not one of those games….

Game on.

The Doosh-Backs

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 11, 2014

It’s nice to see the D-backs staying focused and professional through the end of the season. Jeez, what happened to professionalism? These guys are laying down like dogs. I suppose I should be happy about it, these wins go straight in the bank and at this point in the season each one is like gold. I just have no respect for them.

Remember in 2010 when the Cubs took out the Padres near the end of the season? I think they might have swept them or something like that allowing us to still have a chance on the final game of the season.

Now THAT is a team to respect and honor.

Still, Pretty Cool…..

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 10, 2014

Remember that game back in 2010 vs the Dodgers where the Giants hit 4 home runs and won? I’m pretty sure Burrell hit one and Uribe might have hit one to win it. Well, last night’s game didn’t remind me of that game at all. But I remember the feeling after that 2010 game and it was like, “this could be a special year.” And frankly, last night’s game didn’t give me that kind of feeling either. 

But last night’s game was pretty cool–about as cool as a second baseman who’s hitting ,327 (an average that would lead the NL by a wide margin if he had enough at bats).

…about as cool as a scrap heap starting pitcher needing only 84 pitches to fire a complete game.

….about as cool as a September stretch run against the boys bathed in blue…..

Beating The Hell Out of Arizona

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 9, 2014

This was a pretty fun play to watch:

http://gfycat.com/AbsoluteWelltodoBlackpanther

Giants face Wade Miley tonight– a lefty I’ve never really been too impressed with but he does pop in now and again with effective appearances. 

But tonight, we must crush him. 

Grinding to the Finish

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 8, 2014

And so it has come to this. Nineteen games remaining. All against the NL West. As it should be. If you’ve resigned yourself to the wild card being the more attainable goal, you have to feel pretty good about our standing. If you think the NL West crown is still a possibility, you’re right, it is definitely a possibility. 

All I know is that I’m happy to be done with AL ball. At least until October….

NFL…..

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 7, 2014

I’m excited that the Giants game is this evening because otherwise, I might not watch it. Today is Christmas and the Breeders Cup all rolled into one. There is nothing like Week 1 in the NFL. Fantasy football is the king of all games fantasy. I’m not going to disclose how many teams I’ve got going at fanduel.com today. I played almost everyday in baseball this Summer and never came close to this number. But there are simply too many angles this week and too many noobes trying the daily game out for the first time. It’s free-money Sunday. 

I wonder how fantasy games have come to affect the attitude of the players. This has become an enormous business. I watched a regular Joe win 1 million dollars a couple of weeks ago on a single day of fantasy baseball. And make no mistake about it, the players know about the action on them. They play it themselves on the “other” sports in their home games. There are not one but TWO million dollar tournaments today at fanduel. After Kaep runs for a TD and he’s doing his kiss-his-arm thing, is he thinking, “I just helped someone win a hundred grand with that run.” 

The impact of the players scoring individually has turned into a billion dollar legal industry. And it’s only going to get bigger. The NFL (and all sports) love daily fantasy games. It’s been a boon for them with fans who normally wouldn’t care about a game suddenly glued to the tv to root for an outcome. Everyone wants a piece of this action and you can see the explosion  of advertising on the radio, tv and internet. 

Daily fantasy sports has been a revelation for me and with my favorite team choosing to start a domestic violence perp in Dallas today, I’m happy to be able to distract myself from my pathetic Niners with a real interest in pretty much every single other game out there. Let’s get it on….

See ya around 5:07pm….

 

Jake Peavy is a Stud

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 6, 2014

For you late West coast sleepers, you get to roll out of bed this morning to a MadBum/David Price showdown. Not too shabby for blowing off that worm.

What can you say about Jake Peavy except that he’s one of our MVP’s this season. Not only has he pitched brilliantly but he’s clearly a *clubhouse guy* and with Cain going down and Timmy pitching like shit, this staff probably couldn’t have weathered his absence. 

Detroit must have looked at last night’s humble line up and remembered 2012 and just said to themselves, “Who ARE those guys?” 

 

NFL Football is Here!

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 4, 2014

I can’t keep logging in and looking at that anymore so here’s a pm thread with no game for no reason other than to get that fat fuck Dodger fan off the main thread……

Niners are screwed this weekend, by the way. Dallas is going to beat them. I know, it’s hard for me to admit it. Hope I’m wrong…..

Also, this is fantastic. Submitted by “Team Lukie” who refuses to post here but reads the Flap every day.

A Big Fat Drunk Dodger Fan

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 3, 2014

I choose not to discuss the Sherpa land train wreck today. Instead, I am posting a thread about this guy. Someone on the internet called him the Dodgers “biggest fan.”

This pic makes me happy inside. Jesus, think about how much volume is *inside* this guy. Little known fact: Elvis Presley died on the toilet with 20 pounds of shit still inside his body. I think there is now physical photographic evidence that this guy has him beat…….

artdealerfan

Why Hasn’t Ray McDonald Been Suspended Yet?

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 2, 2014

Niner Thread because I’ve been disturbed by this since I found out about it over the weekend……

Jim Harbaugh was on KNBR this morning proclaiming how he’ll never tolerate domestic violence from any player on his team. It was a cute speech. Forgive me if I gag. Why is Ray McDonald still practicing with the team? Why hasn’t he been suspended pending this investigation? Pay him, I don’t give a shit. That’s what they do with cops and other people who get suspended during an investigation. 

There is no time to wait for this to work itself out in court. That could take a while and besides, the NFL isn’t bound by the legal system when it comes to suspending players. Ray Rice didn’t get convicted of shit. So, regardless of what you think of his absurd 2 game suspension, waiting around for the legal system to sort this out and THEN react is idiotic. And unnecessary. 

The Niners have a terrible track record with addressing their out of control players off field behavior. Example: Aldon Smith left a drunk tank at 11am and then practiced THAT DAY. And he played every snap of the game that week. Despicable. He was asleep at the wheel at 6am on a residential street doing a 16 inch burner in some dudes lawn for 3 minutes. And a point of interest: Ray McDonald lives on this street…..

They fucked up then and they are fucking up now. Suspend McDonald immediately. There is ample evidence to do so. His pregnant girlfriend has bruises all over her face and neck. How did they get there? I don’t know but that is enough evidence to suspend him. Suspend him while you are doing due diligence. And it should have happened immediately upon his arrest and the pics of his pregnant girlfriend. The New England Patriots cut Aaron Hernandez THE DAY he got arrested…..

The Niners need to act right now, not spout off bullshit about how “domestic violence will never be tolerated.” Please. Who the fuck DOES tolerate domestic violence (or support it)? Words mean nothing. Act now or the easy going Niner fan base is going to react with a severe backlash. Mark my words, this will affect them at the gate and elsewhere if the team allows this dipshit to play this weekend……

A question I’d love to hear Harbs answer: If Ray Rice was on your team, would you let him play? Or would you release him since you have no tolerance for domestic violence? And yeah, it was your own bro who fucked that one up.

Jim Harbaugh is at a critical point in his career right now. This will affect his legacy and everything he does going forward. This has nothing to do with the legal system and/or Ray McDonald’s rights. The NFL isn’t bound by that system or his rights anyway.

The Niners have the ball right now. And so far, they are engaging in a long, slow fumble……

 

Coors Fielded

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 2, 2014

Romo’s slider doesn’t slide in Colorado and even though Bochy knew this he was forced to have to use him. Predictable results ensued. 

I had a fantastic Labor Day dinner and didn’t sweat that loss one bit. 

We still won a game yesterday. 

And my glass half full approach to life continues on……

Winning Big and Flying HIGH

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on September 1, 2014

I’m not sure, but I think 15 runs is the most runs I’ve seen the Giants score (in person). I’m guessing I’ve been to 250 games or so in my life. I vaguely remember being at a game in the 80’s where Darrell Evans hit an absolute BOMB into the bleachers (and a second one later in the game) and the team won 18-1. But I might have just dreamed that.

There is a fairly hilarious video taken of me dancing inside the stadium. If my buddy decides to send it to me, I’ll post it here. It’s good to be able to laugh at yourself.

Headed into altitude now. And I’m not just talking about Coors Field. This team is flying HIGH these days! 

____________________

interesting observation about the Lincecum appearance. When he got called into the game the crowd went INSANE and gave him what felt like a one minute STANDING ovation. After Braun hit that monster bomb there was barely a low groan from the crowd. But every time he would throw a simple strike they erupted in celebration. It was the oddest scene—40K literally trying to will their former hero back to glory…….

_____________________

as many of you know, my daughter doesn’t give much of a shit about baseball. That always makes taking her a bit of a financial grind since I know she won’t appreciate the seat she gets ($350 for the 6 of us to sit in the center field bleachers) and I know going in that I’m on the hook for buying her some gear once inside the park because she likes the “look” of a Giants fan. 

So around the 4th inning she’s bored and wants to shop. Check out how many freaking people are in this store in the middle of the game! If anyone wonders how much dough the Giants haul in with merchandise sales, well, they just shouldn’t wonder anymore….

armsocks2

 

I got out of there pretty clean– 1 tank top for $32 and arm socks for $15. At least she LOOKS like a fan. :) Cute as hell too. 

armsocks

Fortuna Spinneth UPWARDS

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 31, 2014

Jake Peavy with the Giants: 2.66 ERA. I’d say that’s a move that’s work out quite nicely. In fact, where would we be without Jake Peavy?

The Giants pitching has straight BROUGHT IT on this home stand and it’s time for MadBum to put the cherry on top. 

I will be at the game today. We have a solid chance to pull within 1.5 of The Art Dealers.

 

Big Win in Your Face

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 30, 2014

13-2? These threads just sort of write themselves, don’t they?

Panic 4 hits? He’s hitting .312 and doing a better impression of the best Scoots ever had to offer than Scoots himself.

Buster 5 hits? He’s as locked in as he’s ever been.

Hey, Milwaukee doesn’t suck and the Giants just took a 15 game winner out to the woodshed. 

The only thing I have to complain about is figuring out how to get to the game tomorrow. 280 is closed and I heard that fans at the game last night had a terrible time getting into the park on time. Could be a Caltrain game….

Focused Up and Winning

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 29, 2014

Excited to head into Milwaukee. It’s a great yard to hit in and Voggy has been “lights out” for most of the year. We are only 4.5 games off the Dodgers and the focus should still be on winning the division, not a wild card spot. The rest of the season starts NOW.

Congratulations to Yuzzie-Pet for achieving his unreal record of 46 straight hitters in a row. It’s more impressive, to me, that he did it over so many different appearances. You don’t always head out to the mound with your best stuff. 

 

Winning With Class

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 28, 2014

Have you guys noticed the idiotic new tradition in mlb where players violently rip off a guy’s jersey after he hits a walk off home run? It doesn’t always come off during the first rip, it usually takes several guys to tear it off the player. Someone is going to get injured by this, mark my words.

Fast forward to Buster Posey after he blasted the Giants to another victory and you’ll notice that his jersey is still neatly worn even after the celebration at home plate.

Classy team. 

Classy win…..

Our Shitty Hitters Can Go Fuck Themselves, Hard.

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 27, 2014

Are mid-game threads allowed to call out what a shit-fuck offense we have? And SHIT FUCK doesn’t really get to the heart of it.

Anyway, this is a mid game thread and I’ll bounce right back to puppy dogs and cotton tails tomorrow. At least until 9/1 when I will let the swear words FLOW………

Dominant

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 27, 2014

Last night’s 1 hitter was just a dominant performance by MadBum. Even though it wasn’t a no hitter, it was a better overall pitching performance than either of Timmy’s no hitters. I think the most dominant outing I’ve ever seen was probably Timmy’s 14 strikeout performance in the 2010 NLDS vs the Braves. He gave up 2 hits over 9 innings complete. But it just never felt like they Braves were going to score. Plus, the Braves were a very good team making it feel that much more dominant. 

What’s your “most dominant” pitching performance you remember watching? (tv or live). 

Just looking at our recent history, you have Dirrrrrty’s no hitter, Cain’s perfecto and Timmy’s 2 no hitters. And then you have last night’s dominant gem.

But there are others that I’m sure I’ll be reminded of in the comment section below…….

Moving Onward and Upward!

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 26, 2014

That was not a fun game to watch. And this thread is not going to be fun to write. But here goes:

I stole this from Carl Steward but it’s the most positive thing I can find this morning. The Giants are 5 games out. On this date in 2010 we were 6.5 games out. 

We get to play Colorado again today and I truly believe we will get back on the beam with a win.

Oh, and Timmy is now in the bullpen so that has to make many Giants fans happy. Right?

Destroying the VMI Challenged Rockies Today

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 25, 2014

Normally, I would be bummed about the Giants returning home for a series since they’ve sucked so badly this year at AT&T. But today, I’m excited. Colorado has the worst visual memory index number of any team in baseball today at -25.97. Peavy should toy with them. 

VMI is a fascinating tool I’ve used this year to assess pitchers and hitters on a daily basis. It factors in changes in altitude, humidity and temperature and how those changes affect a player’s visual memory and muscle memory. I encourage anyone interested to check out the VMI website at http://www.baseballvmi.com

Colorado is throwing a very bad left handed pitcher at us today. I expect all our hitters to feast on him and a handy win is likely forthcoming…..

Getting Ready For a W

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 24, 2014

I just saw a tweet that has to be wrong: Petit is 7 hitters away from the all time record of 45 consecutive batters retired. Wow. That’s incredible.

Feeling REALLY good about today’s match up. Voggy is tough as nails and while Strasburg is good at home (and in general) he’s still just a man. We have a team full of men. 

Hope everyone out here made it through last night’s quake ok. It woke me up but we’re 70 miles away so it wasn’t a real big deal. Kinda reminded me of back in the day with the ladies. Hey now! 

All right, the weather is clear in DC, no rain on the way, and our sunrise continues to rise high in the sky. 

Go Giants! 

Winning With MOMENTUM

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 23, 2014

What a win last night. What a glorious, unexpected, needed win last night.

Joe Panik has become one of my favorite players and a reminder to all of us that our minor league system is developing more than just roster fillers.

Michael Morse is a beast.

Buster Posey could care less about pain and jacked out his 2nd bomb in as many nights.

I feel like this team has really turned a corner and I can finally stand behind them with genuine belief that they’ll be in the race all season. 

My old man was mistaken. That wasn’t a sunset he saw. It was a sunrise. 

sunrise

 

Here’s a clip of the text exchange I had with Pawlie Kokonuts last night and today. PK was at a minor league game last night and watched Nate S play. 

1

 

and this morning:

2

Washing Up in Washington

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 22, 2014

The Giants “Rain Train” across America pulls into DC today to take on the pesky Nats. We never play well here and (surprise!) there are thunder storms forecast for the game. Huddy is probably the only guy who got 30 winks as the rest of the team flew in late last  night after splitting 1.5 with Chicago yesterday.

But these are professional athletes and their level of conditioning should power them through tonight and, hopefully, a series win. 

When Winning a Protest Might Actually be a Loss

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 21, 2014

So, of COURSE thunderstorms are forecast to be blowing through Chicago today. Pressure is on the Cub groundscrew, eh? I sure hope they spooled that tarp back correctly. 

Today is set up to be a total clusterfuck. And with the team headed to play the Nats tomorrow in Washington, always a challenging place for them to play, it makes me wonder if today’s suspended game is even worth it. 

Hey, maybe it will all work out. But my pessimistic side says that this day is going to be more trouble than it’s worth. The last thing the team needs is to play a game and a half with a couple of rain delays before a red eye flight to Washington.

Good luck in Washington. They’ll need it. 

What the Hell Was That?

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 20, 2014

I had the game on with no sound last night, getting stuff done, and all of a sudden I looked up and saw the tarp on the field. It was like it just came out of nowhere. I was shocked as I didn’t see any of that coming on the radar leading up to the game. And because I play daily fantasy now, as opposed to the season long fantasy, I have become somewhat of an expert at reading radar at weather.com. But clearly, I missed something last night.

After the tarp went on the story of the bumbling grounds crew came out and I sat there watching in disbelief as they tried in vain to rake up the lake that had formed at shortstop. 

I live in California, I don’t understand weather like that….

Chi Town Time

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 19, 2014

With gall bladders on short supply for Flappers across the nation, the Giants begin a critical series in Chicago. This is an opportunity to keep momentum going and take advantage of another bad team. 

Having never been to Wrigley, I will re-post Pawlie’s epic tale about a trip he took to Chicago in the late 70’s. Enjoy.

______________________________________-

pawliekokonuts said, on August 18, 2014 at 12:12 pm (Edit)

Never been to Chicago? Here’s a redacted [to protect the guilty] morsel from my book-in-progress of my first visit there. Feeling positively chirpy today because I’m sending the MS to my friend Dan Valenti, author and editor. I have been ensnarled on this project. It is devolving. I need his help. I feel free just printing all 200+ pages. So, here’s a worldwide Flap exclusive sneak preview for an off-day:

“Midnight (And Later) Run

Alcohol is a strange fuel, and an even stranger GPS.
“Let’s go to Wrigley Field.”
“Okay. Why not? Let’s go.”
Who cares if it’s the middle of a booze-sodden night in a bar in Dayton, Ohio? Who cares whether the Cubs are even in town? What does it matter whether we have money, tickets, hotel, or brains? Worst of all, who are we to let a nearly catastrophic mishap hold us back? (More on that in a bit.) We are young and invincible. And we are baseball fans.
We in this case are your author, his brother just graduated from the University of Dayton, and his brother’s Jersey friend, Steve. We did at least have a car, my (and my wife’s) little green Subaru, in 1978, when most Americans barely knew how to pronounce the automaker’s name.
Earlier in the evening, a celebratory and under-the-influence Jersey Boy had commandeered some of Dayton’s municipal signage to play drunken warrior with. He uprooted a street sign and made believe it was a lance, maybe a javelin. Boys will be boys. When you are young and drunk, this strikes you as hilarious if for no other reason than that it’s outrageousness. Plus, he looked like a young Elvis Presley, so that made it more incongruous. Worst of all, in the post-graduation romp, my brother mistook a cellar door for another door and hurled himself down a flight of stairs to the basement, cutting his head and probably suffering a concussion. To this day, I regret I did not insist on a visit to the hospital, yielding to his resistance. The nasty injury was not enough to wave off a middle-of-the-night barroom plan to head off to Chicago to watch baseball the next day.
Jersey needed money. On second thought, I’m sure we all needed money, but I was content to live on plastic and borrowed time, as suited the nature of my life then.
“Wait here,” Jersey Boy instructed us as we sat in a parking lot near an all-night eatery and near Jersey’s place of employment, a Hess gas station.
“I’ll get some money. I have the keys.”
Great. So, now I’m an accomplice, a driver in a getaway car. Perfect.
After too many minutes – was it five? ten? fifteen? – we see Nolfi come running in the night, laughing and frantic. He jumps into the car.
“Hurry. Let’s get the fuck out of here.”
“Are you kidding?”
“No, the cops came, but I told them I had the keys and needed to get this jacket. Come on, let’s go.”
How did we find the highway? Did we have a map? Did it matter? Our adventure was now both funny and dangerous. Onward to Wrigley Field! None of us had ever been to Chicago, except for a layover at O’Hare, which could have been anywhere.
The humor began to wear off in Indiana as not-yet burgeoning cornfields and silos sailed past us in the May night. It was no longer a novelty, and we were not in manic phase of inebriation anymore. But let’s be honest. We had a few six packs accompanying us, despite the danger, the foolishness, the recklessness, and collective self-will run riot. We had an inanimate companion on the journey, The Sporting News’s latest edition of The Complete Baseball Record Book. It helped to keep us awake. It was a fantastic conversation aide. Maybe it saved our lives by keeping us alert enough to drive.
Catching the first hints of dawn somewhere in Indiana, as I was pretzeled in the back seat of the two-door, my sane self shouted: what the fuck have we done and why? We’re going to a game in Wrigley Field? The one in Chicago? Today? This afternoon? Are you shitting me?
Gary, Indiana, looked smokey and menacingly industrial, wrought of iron and hard work. Odd that such a machinery-ish and metallic place would have the name “Gary,” but it did and it does. (It reminded me of my life-long friend Gary Velez, a baseball fan who was with us in spirit., but back in stamford corporeally.) As we entered its environs, the Windy City lived up to its name, rocking the car with gusts as we came down the Loop.
So this is Chicago.
Here we are.
Is the wind blowing out or in?
I think it’s in.
No, maybe out.
What the fuck do you know?
The intellectual conversation of hung over, actually still drunk, white boys in their twenties.
We took to singing Sinatra over and over. “CHIC cah go, my kind of town.”
We found a motel, in downtown, not far from the elevated train. It offered a scenic panorama from the window on the ground-floor room. A beautful view of . . . a Dumpster. It was in the morning. We took a nap. How did we sleep? Three to a bed? Two beds and a cot? You might wonder how we checked in before noon without paying for two nights. Let’s merely note that we discovered later our half-star motel seemed to feature hourly rates for select clientele.
The train to Wrigley was abuzz with fans parading to the afternoon game. (This was ten years before the Cubs surrendered to Modern Life and put in lights.) We walked around the hallowed grounds of Wrigley, busy and loud with fans. I had not yet developed my habit of buttonholing fans wearing Giants gear in strange cities. If I did, I don’t remember any incidents from this voyage. We were hungry. We entered Ray’s Bleacher Bums restaurant. I would have to classify this as my first sports bar. There were no franchise sports bars in every American city in 1978. The place was like spring break in Daytona Beach (I guess). A loud, raucous carnival atmosphere rocked the joint. We may have eaten a hamburger. More likely, we just resumed our drinking. It was easy to meet other partying drunks. Babes, lots of babes. (Isn’t everyone a babe when you are drunk?) We had a camera. We took pictures of the three of us in alternating poses with party-animal ladies. Tourists outside the gates of baseball’s Mecca, partaking of the fleshpots. Nothing “happened” at Ray’s. No indictment-worthy infidelities, beyond those of the will. But the capturing of photographic evidence of our antics was not smart. Less smart was my propensity to share these images with my wife, in my allegedly more sober moments, weeks later, not having fished out the accusing photos. Worse yet was sharing these with family and friends weeks later.
“Look at these pictures from our trip to Wrigley Field!”
“Oh.”
And then for me to wonder at the awkward response of those viewing this booklet of developed carnage.
I was married nearly a year at the time. This is not the sort of bedrock on which to build marriage number one.
The grounds around the stadium and within looked worn and littered and dingy. These were harder times for baseball. Then again, maybe it was merely the fact that we were dingy and littered with the detritus of a night’s drive from Dayton.
We sat in the bleachers, either by choice or necessity.
The bleachers did not disappoint as a venue of unique perspectives and atmosphere. One regular bleacher bum roamed his kingdom, standing on the wall, juggling, and chanting like a shaman. He repeatedly yelled out the name of the Cubs’ (and later the Giants’) second baseman, Manny Trillo: “Tree oooh. Hoooooh. Treeee ooooh. Hooooooooh. Tree ooooh. Hooooooooh. Tree oooooh. Hoooooooh.” This was a few years after outfielder Rick Monday, then with the Cubs, famously rescued an American flag from being burned by protesters on the field during a game at Dodger Stadium. Monday was now with the visiting Dodgers. (Monday reportedly still owns the flag he rescued.) Our juggling high priest of the bleachers added to the canon of his litany “Hey Monday hey Monday hey Monday hey Monday hey Monday hey Monday” in staccato fashion.
All right.
But all was not holy, by a long stretch, in the bleachers of the Friendly Confines on that afternoon. It was wickedly cold in early May. There was sleet or snow mixed in with cold rain. It was teeth-chatteringly cold, with or without Jersey’s Hess jacket. Not having planned this trip in the least, brother and I were lucky to be wearing sweaters, never mind winter coats and gloves. Some of our fellow bleacher denizens sported t-shirts or no shirts. That’s what you did. Although we were on a drunken binge, I have a distinct memory of succumbing to reason and buying a cup of coffee, just to keep the hands warm. (I wasn’t a coffee drinker then; strictly tea when not imbibing alcohol.)
Tell me again: why were we doing this?”

Doing Just Enough

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 18, 2014

The Phillies stink but we seem to be slightly better than they are, at least at AT&T. I’m not sure how Lincecum managed to secure a W yesterday but he got it done. “The ultimate five and dive” according to Schulman. 

But you know the old saying, “ya gotta beat the bad teams to….prove you aren’t a bad team, too?” Something like that.

The Giants are off to Chi town, a place I’ve never been….

Well THAT Was Unexpected

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 17, 2014

What a weird game. The 5th inning ended. We were down 5-1 to the pathetic Phillies. Flappers around the world were signing off in favor of something, anything to do, other than watch the train wreck that the SF Giants have become in 2014.

Then they score 4. 

Then they score 1 more.

And Romo of all people comes in to shut the door on the season closing on us. 

Crazy huh?

Tired

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 16, 2014

Question: Last night’s loss was as galling as it was frustrating. But was it worse for you because of the galling and frustrating last 2+ months? For me, I think it was. I am tired of Bruce Bochy saying the same thing over and over, just using different words, in his post game conferences. I am tired of the Giants losing at home. I am tired of the offense doing next to nothing every night. I am tired of stupid base running mistakes from Gregor Blanco. And I am tired of Tim Flannery never getting any criticism for making bad decisions. 

So yes, last night sucked. Maybe a little bit more than a random August loss normally does….

Hamels v Bumgarner

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 15, 2014

Fun one tonight. For some reason, the Phillies are throwing 5 left handed bats at Bumgarner. Cole Hamels usually forces us into swallowing giant loads of cum and Bumgarner has inexplicably smoked copious amounts of pole at home this year.

So, this does not seem like a good relationship for us.

But hey, it’s baseball, who knows?

Fall Out from the Review Reversal

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 14, 2014

Finding the whining about yesterday’s review reversal to be amusing. You could argue that the rule should be changed (though I would disagree with that) but you can’t argue the call. You are not allowed to block the plate unless you have the ball. Period. I didn’t read any of Flowers’ comments after the game, but I hope he ate this one. If he didn’t, then he doesn’t know the rules of his trade and that’s inexcusable. 

White Sox fans can moan and cry next to their puppet Hawk but it just shows a stunning lack of perspective (similar to the female Baltimore Raven fans who wore Ray Rice jersey’s to their last pre-season game). 

I don’t think they should change the rule because it’s in place for one reason: safety. Do not block the plate unless you have the ball. 

How hard is that to figger out? 

Day Time Thread

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 13, 2014

Not gonna see the game but wanted to give you guys a game time thread. If you can bring yourself to watch this stuff. 

Back in the Home We Call Hell

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 12, 2014

After a day off to travel home and clear their collective mind, the Giants get a break today as they get to face Chris Sale. Uhhhhhhhhh…..this isn’t going to go well.

Supposedly the Giants were in on Jose Abreu but I doubt they went anywhere near what it took to get him.

Conor Gillaspe will likely be starting at 3rd base for the White Sox. We traded Gillaspe for someone named Jeff Soptic and that trade can safely be graded as an F- with Gillaspe turning into a serviceable corner infielder for Chicago.

But hey, math still says we are right in the thick of this so let’s go with the math tonight and hope for the best. At least we don’t have to deal with the DH position…..

Once Upon a Time….

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 11, 2014

Everyone remembers The Bowker Gang. There was, of course, John Bowker himself. Brian Bocock. Dan Ortmeier. Manny Burriss. Todd Linden. There were others. They were bad asses who couldn’t hit an mlb breaking ball. The Bowker Gang. They’d ruin you in a dark ally.

This year we have….The Panik Attack. Joe Panik is their shaky leader. Adam Duvall. Andrew Susac. Matt Duffy. Throw in Yo Yo Perez for an even five. These guys came on suddenly, without warning, much like a real panic attack. Even though it’s not their fault, they shouldn’t even be here, they’e part of a team that is causing Giants fans a deepening sense of impending doom. And though these feelings aren’t real, that’s what it’s like to be a Giants fan these days…..

I completely feel Zumiee’s excellent POTD. Last spring, in order to properly celebrate Brandon Belt’s strong start, I threatened to rip a ferocious beat all over the inside of James’ house, with Snarkk promising to be right behind me. James and his wife hastily rummaged for the copious amounts of plastic wrap that would have been needed to cover their valuables.

It was a great time to be a Giants fan. Seems like a million years ago. Time to put away the plastic wrap till next Spring.

Shut Out, Predictably, Again

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 10, 2014

Last night in the 4th inning I almost posted something about this feeling like another shutout coming but I thought that was a little too obvious at that point. I did make a point to mock the 2nd half of our line up before the game. The final 4 triple A guys we had hitting went 2-11. That’s better than I thought they’d do. That was better than the supposed major league guys in front of them who went 2-15.

James Shields threw his first complete game since 2012 and you had the feeling all along that he wasn’t the only one who could have gone the distance last night. If I am a pitcher I throw nothing but sliders to Pence and Morse and I bet I strike them out 80% of the time…..

After the game there was lots of positive talk about still being in the race and just needing to play better. That was just words for the beat guys to print. I’d love to hear what Huddy thinks about the line ups he’s had hitting for him in his last couple of starts. If you go back and look at those starting line ups they’re littered with guys who shouldn’t be playing at this level or who aren’t ready to play at this level.

I get it. There’s no help coming from the farm system. Pagan is back but Belt is a total wild card right now. Sabean HAS to go find another outfielder and stick Morse and his ground ball hitting ways at first base–or the bench where he belongs. And this isn’t a push for Rios necessarily. I’m talking about any outfielder who can be considered a major league player—I’d even take Ben Revere if his health checks out. And if he doesn’t go get an outfielder he has to go get a second baseman. He should go get both. Deals can and will get done before September 1st.

But he can’t wait that long. We have four minor leaguers in today’s line up (Panic, Duvall, Duffy and Susac). —and they are ALL hitting next to each other, lol. Go try to find a team even remotely in contention with four, unproven minor league hitters in today’s line up, hitting next to each other or otherwise. You just can’t win consistently at this level at this time of year with that kind of nonsense in your daily line up……

_____________________________

fun facts from yesterday: Bad Penny, whoops I mean “Brad Penny”, started for the Marlins yesterday and won. And Heath Hembree was the rock from the Boston bullpen in last night’s 19 inning win going 4 innings and giving up no runs.

Game Time Thread

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 9, 2014

I know it’s probably not a popular topic here, but is there anything lamer than a bunch of idiots screaming “Get in the hole!!!!” a nano-second after a pro golfer hits his tee shot on a par 3? Is there anything more played out than this tired tradition? Have any of them ever been right, even once? Just STFU and stop drawing attention to yourself. No one cares about your call. We are watching the golf tournament……

Usually I would hope we run Shields pitch count up so we can get him out of the game and into the bullpen. But goddamn, does KC have a flame throwing bullpen or what? It seems like every guy they bring out throws 98-99…..

That’s all I got today…..

Sabean! Wake Up! Go Get Alex Rios!

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 8, 2014

If Alex Rios could play center field I’d pick him up from the Rangers in a nano-second. I think I’d probably go ahead and do it anyway since Belt is going through another round with his brain. As I suspected, he will struggle with symptoms for the rest of this season. He claims it wasn’t headaches but even if that were true it wouldn’t surprise me if he was dealing with dizziness or something else related to his brain injury.

For that reason, I say you go ahead and roll the dice with Rios. Morse can play first base. And on days when Belt can play, Morse goes to the bench. Look, the Morse story was a nice one for 2 months but the reality is that he has driven in 14 runs since the end of May. That is unacceptable for a run producer. Now, Rios hasn’t been much better but he’s also a run creator, something Morse isn’t. The naysayers talk about Rios’ declining power and that’s true. But they conveniently forget to include that he’s currently leading the AL in triples. This is a guy only 2 years removed from 20/20 and his speed is still in tact. And his .293 batting average suggests this is not a guy who is done.

Rios towers above Morse in every category except Morse’s ability to occasionally run into a baseball that goes out of the park. And he’s simply not done that enough times over the last 2+ months to justify playing him EVERY DAY.

You pick Rios up for next to nothing as insurance and if, in fact, he shows he can still hit reasonably close to his career numbers (career numbers that, by the way, dwarf what Morse has done in his career) then you go ahead and pick up his option next year. If he doesn’t do what’s expected in the last 2 months of the season you buy him out for a paltry 1 mil.

With Pagan’s back, Belt’s brain and Morse’s ongoing mediocrity, this is an insurance play you take out without even blinking…..

P v P

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 7, 2014

I’m driving a very long way today so I’ll make this quick…

Peavy v Peralta

Thoughts?

*Another* Big Game

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 6, 2014

Gotta just wash last night off and move on….

It always feels like Gallardo dominates us so I went and looked it up and he’s not as much of a Giant Killer as I thought. 6-3 career record. 2.81 ERA. .223 batting average against. We can make something out of that especially if you think Gallardo isn’t as good as he once was. He’s been pretty good recently, though. I’m more worried about his bat than his arm.

I’m curious too see how Voggy does. Just like a pitcher coming off a no hitter, I don’t ever play old pitchers who are coming off their first career complete game.

But who knows? Maybe he fires another gem……

Nice Start to a Road Trip

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 4, 2014

Three of 4 in New York? Plus an actual DJ Loo sighting? MacDog = the New BuzzSaw? Wither RealBuzzSaw? Is that even possible?

I’m blown away right now. I’m going to put this forward right now and stand by it till the end of the season no matter the outcome: a DJ Loo union with another Flapper is equal to a rally thong or something better. And I don’t know what that means, but it might be found gold. Baby.

The Dodgers are getting killed again as I write this……

We are in such an awesome spot to bounce forward. It’s almost like the next 2 series are a joke. Milwaukee and their bowling pin bullshit we never win in their house of horrors. KC is literally DH Hell for our hitterless team. I dunno, normally I’d be negative and pissing on myself with the sun setting and shit  but DJ Loo was a found and seen man tonight.

Anything is possible……

Where Have All the Good Hitters Gone?

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 3, 2014

Nice win today, great pitching and good hitting. Gotta see more of that to avoid the sun setting or the Bad Penny or whatever I keep babbling about here…..

Just took a sneak peak at tomorrow’s starters to see if there are any daily fantasy angles. I keep marveling at the SP’s ERA’s this year. Anyone else noticing this? Tomorrow there are seven games and seven of the 14 SP’s have ERA’s in the 2’s. And the monsters aren’t even going tomorrow. It’s really shocking to me how many good starting pitchers there are out there these days.

Personally, I attribute it to less steroids taken by the hitters since the steroid era ended. And we all know the pitchers took them too but you take that advantage away from both of them and pitching beats hitting all day long.

How many players do you think are still taking steroids? If you strike off Canseco’s idiotic number of 80% and guess that maybe 40% of them were taking them during the steroid era, what % do you put it at today? 20%? 10%? 5%?

Seems like a fun poll question. I’m sure I’ll fuck up the answers as I usually do but here goes:

Peavy Needs to Tone it Down

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 3, 2014

I get that Peavy’s “intense” and whatnot, but he might be better served to dial it down a notch or two. It’s pretty hard to play loose when you’ve got a guy on the mound who’s ready to start gnashing nails the moment something goes even slightly wrong. Peavy makes Voggy look like an impish schoolgirl. He’s now 1-11 on the year and he might consider that all that bad luck is at least partially his doing. Not every pitch he throws has to feel like the World Series is on the line…..

Now, to the Michael Morse Problem: He’s obviously sucked for a while now. It would be nice to give him a day off. Possibly a permanent one. But Bochy’s hands are tied because Sabean sat on his until the trade deadline came and went. So we get to enjoy all the Michael Morse we can stomach or, at best, whatever replacement-level player Bochy decides to pivot to….

MadBum needs a huge huge effort today. This is the Mets. It shouldn’t take much with all their left handed hitters and a gimpy shouldered David Wright……..

Satisfying Win

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on August 2, 2014

Though the Mets aren’t very good, they definitely present a few constant land mines for a team like the Giants (see: Luke Duda) so scoring a W last night was an important first step towards winning this road trip. This is a HUGE start for Master Peavy who is 1-10 this season and needs to stop giving up home runs (again, see: Luke Duda).

This is going to either be another baby step forward game or a “sun has set on our season” game. If Peavy can keep the ball in the yard we might win a close one. deGrom has been a surprise tough cookie this year but I don’t trust guys who’s last name start lower case. You’ve all gotta be with me on that, right? lqtm

 

Brian Sabean is Afraid of His Own Shadow

Posted in Uncategorized by Flavor on July 31, 2014

“There were a lot of bad deals to be made and we certainly didn’t want to be a part of it”— Brian Sabean.

What does this mean? Was Sabean out there looking to give up literally NOTHING for reinforcements? Because that’s not how trades work, Brian. We know for a fact that he was in on talks for Bonifaco and Denorfia. I’d like to think he had a conversation with Texas about Rios. Or with Tampa about Zobrist. But those 2 guys didn’t get moved so let’s look at the first two players and see what this ultra-step price was that Sabean was afraid to pay for fear of participating in a “bad deal.”

(And I’ll preface this by saying, what you think of Bonifaco or Denorfia is not important. You can argue whether either is an upgrade on Panik or Blanco, I say it is but that’s not the point. Sabean has been quoted as saying he didn’t want to participate in a “bad deal.” So let’s see what those guys cost……)

Bonifacio went to the Braves (along with lefty reliever James Russell) for a class A catching prospect that was a 2nd round pick in the amateur draft in 2013. In 356 at bats this year in the SALLY league, he’s hitting .279 with 5 home runs. Granted he’s only 21, but if you can’t hit better than that in a straight-ass fastball league, you are not a blue chip prospect–you are a fringe prospect, and Sabean has boatloads of those guys. And I will refer you to the SF Giants minor league link to the right to see all the catchers we have at different levels who are hitting as well as this chump.

Now to Denorfia— The Padres wanted Escobar for him and Sabean said no and pivoted to Boston and that’s how we got Peavy. But what did Seattle give up for Denorfia? They gave SD Abraham Almonte who is a 25 year old outfield who sucks and a 25 year old pitcher who is just spinning his wheels in the minor leagues at a variety of different stops for the M’s. So essentially, Seattle gave up 2 guys who they don’t want who aren’t in their plans who no one considers prospects for Chris Denorfia— a guy who Sabean DID target, this is fact. We have OODLES of guys like these guys in our shitty farm system……..

So what gives here? Does Sabean not understand the concept of countering? Fine, you don’t want to give up Escobar but there are PLENTY of players littering their minor league system at all levels who match up with Almonte and Kohlscheen.

So where were these “bad deals”, Brian? Where were the deals that you felt like you were gonna get totally fleeced and that’s why you did nothing today?

Answer: Sabean has lost a step. Whether he can’t pull the trigger because he’s gun shy or maybe he just doesn’t have a realistic idea of what his farm players are worth. I don’t know. But saying “there were a lot of bad deals out there” should only have been in the context of what they might have acquired that wouldn’t have ended up panning out. There was nothing they could have given up, relative to what the Braves and the M’s gave up (or what the Yankees gave up for Prado) that would have ever in a million years been considered by the fan base to be a “bad deal.”

What could Adam Duvall have fetched? The Giants don’t even consider him a prospect but he could have easily gotten any of the guys listed above.

Sabean’s hands are warm tonight and our season is OVER………

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