The Giants did their best to make the Red Sox feel at home. We all know about the Boston Marathon bombing, and that tragedy made it okay to see a patch with “BOSTON STRONG” and the Red Sox logo on the Giants’ uniforms. Everyone who sort of knew the words sang along to “Sweet Caroline,” and the Ellsbury jerseys outnumbered the Poseys — at least in the few sections around the press box. More on a particular Ellsbury fan later.
We’ve reached the “let’s find reasons to laugh wherever we can” part of the season, I’m afraid. It takes
a special kind of mental illness patience and good humor to sit through a three-pitch Jeff Francoeur strikeout without crushing your phone, laptop, remote control and/or soul unless you think about how ridiculous this all is. The Red Sox were a Bobby Valentine porta-john fire last year, and now they’re cruising through town and destroying the defending world champs (those last two words feel kind of silly to type these days). And that’s after playing the Sunday night game and flying across the country this morning. Someone asked Bruce Bochy after the game if the Giants were tired. Yep. Tired of the 2013 season.
We already knew the Giants were toast, but they decided to make it official tonight and the pro-Boston crowd loved every minute. And the more I think about this, who signed off on the patch with the Red Sox logo? Do all the pregame ceremonies you like (and the Giants did), donate money, go crazy with the Neil Diamond. Fine. But the logo? It’s bad enough that the Giants played as if they all placed futures bets on the Sox to win the AL East before the season, but …
Getting carried away here. That’s what happens to your friendly neighborhood blogger when Francoeur gets double-switched out and Brett Pill takes over in left field (Pill made a couple of putouts and looked fine, not that it matters). Guillermo Moscoso came up to hit with two outs in the seventh inning and Pablo Sandoval on first. Screw it, Bochy said. Jon Lester had a five-run lead and was dealing, so why even try to chip away at Boston’s lead? Should probably save those not-Moscoso relievers for next season.
Bochy talked to Andrew Baggarly about some of the reasons why the Giants have played terrible baseball for the better part of three months, along with some of the things he wishes he could’ve done differently. What’s amazing is one of Bochy’s biggest regrets was being too hard on certain players. You’d think the team-wide malaise — particularly in the areas of defense and “paying attention” — would’ve prodded Bochy into thinking he should’ve been louder and angrier. But that wasn’t the case in Bochy’s mind, and their left fielders against one of the best teams in baseball were Frenchy and Pill on Monday night. The Giants didn’t have it this year, and they’re ready for this thing to be done.
Bochy wanted to get his pregame media session over with as soon as possible, too. But before he could send everyone scurrying away from his favored spot against the dugout wall, he talked about how he doesn’t relish the role of spoiler. The sad part? That was the main story every single beat writer went with in their notes because there was nothing else to write.
Breaking: Bochy doesn’t like managing a pesky band of losers. Let’s see what Lowell Cohn thinks about Bochy’s stance on Yahoo SportsTalk Dead.
After the game it was more of the same. Usually Bochy takes a while to get to the postgame press conference room, and today he was in there less than five minutes after Hector Sanchez struck out to end the game — a moment that caused a tremendous roar from the Boston fans who stuck around. Bochy told us about how Lester pitched well and his guy, Tim Lincecum, wasn’t as sharp. The best part of this game: Lincecum’s asking price inched downward. I guess.
— Oh man, the hijinks in the Giants’ clubhouse. You should’ve been there, Sergio Romo was on his way home with a to-go container carrying a late dinner. Lincecum was wearing a Seattle Supersonics hat … I think I might write a children’s book about the Giants clubhouse.
— To prove I was here and contributed to the fun, here’s me asking Lincecum if the mound was what caused his second inning balk when he nearly fell delivering a pitch with Daniel Nava on third:
— A list of things that are getting tiresome: Marco Scutaro at-bats, Hunter Pence grounders, Lincecum outings where he gives up more than two baserunners per inning, Pablo Sandoval barely breaking up the back end of a double play (but hey, his recent weight loss is a nice late-season positive for the team, right), anything having to do with Francoeur on the field.
— As promised earlier … there was an interesting gentleman (a bro) sitting below the press box. He wore a green and white jersey featuring the number and last name of Jacoby Ellsbury — the soon-to-be free agent centerfielder who delusional Giants fans think the team might target this offseason.
Because this game was only entertaining in the sense that it was a rare example of what happens when AT&T park sellouts go bad, I couldn’t help but stare at Green Jersey Bro as he:
- Spilled something on his seat (and called over a team employee to mop it up).
- Yelled, “YEAH, way to sell out for that BAWL!” to a kid (also wearing an Ellsbury jersey) sitting in the row in front of Bro who picked a foul ball up off the ground. The kid appeared frightened of Green Jersey Bro, and for good reason.
- Tried (and failed) to catch a line drive with his right hand while holding a full order of garlic fries with his other hand.
- Got into a yelling match with a Giants fan one section over that consisted of both men standing up and yelling “SIT DOWN!” again and again at each other.
By the end of the game, two ushers were standing within close range, with one directly behind him, ready to … I don’t know, call for backup? Most of the Giants’ ushers are too old to handle Boston Bros in the ninth inning. Luckily the game ended peacefully, with the Giants’ white flag waving in the outfield (oh, it’s always been white — how convenient) and 25,000 or so Red Sox fans cheering for their team and each other while most of the Giants season ticketholders dreamed of August and September profits via the magic of Stubhub.