Forget In-N-Out and Alka Seltzer; the best cure for a hangover is actually a bunch of multiple-hit games throughout the lineup. Another remedy is the kind of pitching performance everyone around here can’t wait to take for granted, but have actually been pretty rare from the Giants’ first three starters lately.
Sure, it was a nice win, but at first glance the only lasting importance this game will provide is that it was the moment that accelerated Cincinnati pitcher Edinson Volquez’s inevitable transition from starter to journeyman reliever (after a few starts in a row where he gave up 1 ER each time, the oft-injured Volquez gave up 5 ER in 4 2/3 against the Diamondbacks before giving up 5 more in the first inning tonight, an inning he couldn’t even complete).
But for the Giants, tonight’s game wasn’t just mouthwash to take the road trip taste away, it (hopefully) will mark the end of Buster Posey, the best hitter in the National League since his arrival besides perhaps Albert Pujols, hitting second.
Thank you Freddy Sanchez, for a couple things. First, he didn’t let his absolute lack of a clue at the plate affect his defense. Second, he took advantage of bad pitching and collected his first 4-hit game since joining the team. It should mean he’ll be back where he should be in this lineup — not because he deserves it, but because he’s the only one who makes sense hitting there. God knows it makes no sense to put a guy there who’s slugging over .530, not when the Giants don’t have definitive No. 3 or cleanup hitters, besides maybe sticking Huff wherever you don’t put Posey.
Everyone knows the Reds can’t handle the oppressive Bay Area heat…
— Matt Cain’s got a little Big Bird to him, doesn’t he? At least when he trots back to the dugout after making an out at first base. He’s no Pau Gasol, but the blond curls and the fact that his neck looks a lot longer now that he’s lost all his baby weight do bear a resemblance. Oh yeah, he’s also the best pitcher on the Giants staff, the only guy who anybody should feel comfortable with throwing 125 pitches at this point, and the only logical choice to start a Game 1 if the Giants somehow make it out of this mess (not that we’re reserving our postseason tickets).
— Nice job by Cody Ross, who singled in his first plate appearance with his new team, and Nate Schierholtz, who followed a single by the guy trying to steal his job (wait, does Schierholtz even have a discernible job?) with a double of his own after a tremendous at-bat.
— Sure, we could focus on the fact that the guy Ross and Schierholtz faced was some reliever named Logan Ondrusek (who was thrown to the wolves by Dusty Baker), but why drape dark clouds on such a beautiful, sunny San Francisco day?
— Andres Torres, with 2 walks and a homer … when he’s in the lineup and hitting well, the Giants are such a different team. It’s a shame he’s going to have to platoon with R&R (Ross and Rowand) for the rest of the season.
— Pablo Sandoval smacked the ball around a little, but is anybody else getting tired of people predicting his resurgence every time he has a couple good at-bats in the same game? Yes, it would help the team if he went on some sort of Buster-Posey-in-July streak the rest of the way, but we’ve heard he’s on his way back about 48 times this season.
— And adult males, stop wearing panda hats. Ever.
— Scott Rolen and Jimmy Rollins of the presidents of the “Really Good Vets Who Seem Like They’ve Been Killing The Giants For Years But Actually Haven’t Been” club. You know, RGVWSLTBKTGFYBUHB. That club.
— Aubrey Huff is pretty darn awesome. Not because he’s hitting .300 with 22 homers (and he was close to picking up Nos. 22 and 23 tonight), although that is cool. No, it’s because he’s an AL East lifer from two crappy teams who came right in and became the team leader. I think it’s the goatee. That thing is straight up baseball, right there.