Bill Neukom

Postgame notes: because the Giants did actually play a game on Wednesday

These days, posting something on a blog about a game that ended ten hours before is like a newspaper’s front page talking about a scandal that broke three days ago. But when I was trying to write about Wednesday’s game, Mark Purdy had to go and spill the beans about the Giants kicking Bill Neukom to the curb. A very soft, cushy curb with 9 million thread-count sheets covering it, but a curb nonetheless.

The scene was like this in the pressbox (and yeah, I don’t think I’m supposed to break down this fourth wall or whatever, but I don’t give a Jaworski): a few minutes after I came up to the pressbox after listening to half of Carlos Beltran’s interview session in the clubhouse (Beltran speaks in sound bites, so two answers is really all you need to hear) I started uploading videos to YouTube.

I didn’t know how I was going to upload five videos and write a post in about a half hour, since I planned to hit up the Warriors season ticket holder event at Oracle and free food was going to be available at 6 pm*. I had a couple hours, but I also had to walk from the park to my car which was parked at one of those sketchy lots at 6th and Mission (otherwise known as “suicide Mission”) and make the awful trek from downtown SF to Oakland during rush hour.

(*Due to writing the Neukom post and gridlock getting out of downtown, I ended up getting to Oracle right before the event started at 7 pm and didn’t get any free food. But you don’t care. Nor should you.)

So I’m uploading a video and trying to think of how I’m going to start this very post you’re reading (but didn’t start until many hours later) and there was a commotion in the pressbox. People started running off and making phone calls in the hall. Purdy was in the house all game long, but he don’t remember seeing him at the Bruce Bochy presser and he definitely wasn’t in the clubhouse. He also wasn’t in the pressbox when the news hit. Writers that I won’t mention were scrambling. People were grumbling about their days being made much longer after this story hit. I heard Neukom’s name whispered, and did a quick Twitter search. Yep. Gone. And so was my original idea that I’d upload a few videos and head out to Oakland.

But this game deserved better…

— Tim Lincecum was on point with his location at the beginning of this game, which made Wednesday’s game a bit of an anomaly compared to the way most of his starts have begun in recent weeks. Almost surprisingly sharp (Huff’s E-3 aside), since Lincecum says here that he had to shake off a ton of pitches early with rookie catcher Hector Sanchez. By the way, the youngest Sanchy has a nice stroke. Two opposite field fly balls to the warning track today off Mat Latos for Hector (one of the world’s underrated first names), and after Lincecum and Sanchez got on the same page it led to one of Lincecum’s better outings.

— Pablo Sandoval was ridiculous with the glove on Wednesday. Here’s what Lincecum had to say about Sandoval (side note: Lincecum is so solid with the media after his starts, win or lose … he doesn’t say anything stupid, but he doesn’t utter throwaway answers either):

— Since we’re on the subject of Sandoval, what did he have to say about the play Lincecum talked about, and how his off-season weight loss contributed to his improvement with the glove?

— Alright, I’ve waited long enough to bring up the “star” of the day, Carlos Beltran. Why’d I take so long? Because the guy loafs in the field like he’s the second coming of Barry Lamar, on Wednesday allowing Jesus Guzman to turn a bloop single into a double via Beltran’s laziness in the first inning. However, Beltran had a very Bonds-like two homers to right off Latos today, the second one signifying the 300th home run of his career. Sandoval definitely likes Beltran, based on how much time you can see the two conversing about hitting along with Andres Torres before games. But Sandoval wasn’t about to be suckered into saying anything incriminating when asked whether he wanted Beltran back next year (check his reaction):

— And here’s the reptillian one himself, who talks about what he’d offer the guy in the kayak who caught his 300th. Yep, an eyeblack-sporting Beltran definitely wants that ball. Beltran’s hand/wrist/whatever? He “still feels sensation” when he takes some swings and reaches for some balls. Maybe that’s why he can’t be bothered to run all-out in pursuit of every ball hit in his general vicinity? By the way, my favorite part of this video is Beltran’s alarm that makes a ton of noise before he finally turns it off. Does Beltran own a Timex watch? An alarm clock? Do Rolexes make those horrible noises, too? Maybe if I stuck around longer I could’ve gotten the scoop. Look out, Purdy!

— Since this might be the last 2011 Giants victory that I cover (I plan to lurk around the pressbox during the final series against Colorado, but you never know), what will I remember from Wednesday’s 3-1 assertion of dominance over the fighting Latoses?

1. Because I’m easily bought, the fact that actual food was in the pressbox and didn’t cost $9 per serving was a mega-bonus. Lukewarm macaroni and cheese? Yes, please. Did I mention there were chunks of bacon in there? I don’t know how beat writers live to be over 55, to be honest.

2. I really wanted to talk to Sergio Romo today, mostly because the mainstreamers don’t seem to get the undying love on blogs and Twitter there is for this guy, and I wanted to know if HE  knows. Alas, no sight of Romo the whole time I was in the clubhouse.

3. However, on top of all the equipment bags presumably getting wheeled out to the team bus in a huge cart was the famous pink “Hello Kitty” backpack Romo wears on road trips. I would have taken a picture but I’ve been informed by Ryan Leong that snapping photos in the clubhouse is frowned upon. Relax, Giants. Not like I’m trying to recreate a Scarlett Johansson shoot (but if I did, Matt Cain playing the part of Scar-Jo, of course).

4. Caught Lincecum shoving his ever-present Rainbows into an already very full suitcase. I think we’ve all been there whenever we’re getting ready to go on vacation. The suitcase is packed, full as can be, and then you realize at the last minute that if you don’t pack any flip-flops you’ll have to either walk around barefoot or with shoes on in some warm locale, which is horrible.

So that was my experience in the clubhouse. Soon after getting back to the pressbox and hearing about the Bowtie’s demise, Purdy strolled in and took his seat like nothing happened. The other writers started giggling and chattering, while half-heartedly complaining about how he just made their lives that much more difficult. Purdy really was the belle of the ball, as one writer said. Interview requests, attention — he was a pretty popular guy this afternoon. And I can’t begrudge him. It’s a weird business. We’re all looking to break a story, to become journalism’s biggest hero … and then the sun comes up and it’s onto the next story.

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