Where are you going to watch the games this weekend? Are you heading to a sports bar? Flocking to downtown San Francisco to catch a little live Marty Lurie and check out the vibe, which should be pretty positive since the weather’s been so doggone good and the Giants have absolutely captured the town? Do you have more money than God and you’ve already made the trip to Philly to watch the games? Or will you watch the games at home, eyes transfixed on your living room television, doing superstitious things like leaning to one side the entire game or wearing a certain t-shirt or pair of socks for good luck?
(Confession/TMI: I have lucky underwear corresponding to my favorite teams, pairs that supposedly give them the best chance for victory … only problems is when they lose I clear everything that happened that day out of my head, so I’ve probably unwittingly worn losing Niner boxers — usually boxers that feature the Niner logo, by the way — every week this season … sorry, coach Sing.)
Wherever you are, sort of like how my fiance ALWAYS has to watch the “scenes” from the next episode, you want to know what to expect in the 2010 NLCS, right? (That’s the only thing Sports Girl Liz doesn’t like about Mad Men, that their “scenes” are nonsensical and tell you nothing. I LOVE IT. I like surprises. I don’t need to know whether Don Draper is going to go on a bender and fall asleep in his hallway or sleep with a coworker a week before it happens.) So, just like before the NLDS, here are 10 predictions. Some serious, some stupid, all of them guaranteed to happen. I think.
1. Either Tim Lincecum or Jonathan Sanchez will plunk Chase Utley. Utley led the league in HBP from 2007-09 (25, 27, 24), and the only reason why he didn’t lead the league this year (he was hit 18 times) was because he only played in 115 games. 2 of those times in 2010 were by Sanchez, who’s shown a predisposition not to give a crap about what the opposition thinks of him this year. Last year Lincecum drilled Utley in the teams’ last meeting of the season. It won’t be intentional since it’s the NLCS and all, but with Utley leaning into every pitch and a little acrimony already brewing between these teams, there’s a good chance it will happen.
2. Philadelphia Phillies fans will repeatedly make poor jokes relating to the sexual preference of the San Francisco Giants and their fans.
3. San Francisco Giants fans will repeatedly make biased comparisons between Brian Wilson’s and Jayson Werth’s beards.
4. I will eat at least one cheesesteak this weekend from The Cheesesteak Shop on Divisadero. BASG isn’t sponsored like Damon Bruce, I just really like their cheesesteaks and I know all this talk about Philly will make me hungry. I’d normally be wary of jinxing the Giants, but they don’t use Cheez Whiz like those cretins in Philadelphia. Now a bunch of Philly residents are wondering why I called them something that goes in a salad. (I kid, I kid! No threatening emails, please!)
5. Tim McCarver will make a completely ignorant observation about Wilson, a la TBS’ “More guts than stuff” description of the Giants’ closer on Friday night.
6. Joe Buck will react to an extremely dramatic moment with the excitement and energy of a hibernating bear.
7. Questions from fans wondering how they can sync up KNBR with their TV’s will become even more tired and annoying than listening to Buck and McCarver.
8. The bad news: we will all be subjected to about 2,947 political commercials. The good news: we’ll all be able to recite what time Glee is on in our sleep!
9. Placido Polanco is going to find a way to really, really piss me off at least once.
10. The battle between Andres Torres and his bizarro twin, Shane Victorino, will tell us who’ll win this series. Torres does better, the Giants win. If Victorino’s on the bases all series long, the majority of the east coast “experts” will be proven correct.
And no series prediction from me this time. The baseball Gods are just too harsh at times like this. OK, OK, I’m also predicting an exciting series, a ton of strikeouts, way too many conversations about Pat Burrell’s Philadelphia tenure and the personality differences between Lincecum and Roy Halladay, and at least three heart murmurs in my chest. Fried food, tasty beverages, playoff baseball … why do we love so many things that are bad for us?