The San Francisco Giants clubhouse is always louder and more interesting after a win (#analysis), and today was probably the most memorable time I’ve spent in there since the rookies got hazed and had to wear full length lycra bodysuits. The Bay Area media always shows up in full force for day games, presumably because the evening news shows can actually show semi-recent footage.
So, long story short, I was at least five people away from Barry Zito. I couldn’t even see today’s quality starter, so I tried stepping up on the bottom of a locker to get a glimpse. After about a minute I heard someone say, “Excuse me.” It was Madison Bumgarner, and I was standing on the front of his locker. Whoops, sorry Madison. I jumped out of there immediately and gave up on filming anything else Zito-related, but not before I caught this:
After hearing a voice coming from the bottom of the scrum that sounded different from the ones attached to questions about Thursday afternoon’s outing, Zito also said, “Excuse me.” Then he bent over and picked up Gregor Blanco’s young son, who was visiting the clubhouse before his father left with the rest of the team for St. Louis. “I don’t know how he got in there,” Zito said.
After the reporters dispersed from the area around Zito’s and Bumgarner’s lockers, everyone flocked to Brandon Belt’s changing station. I’m not sure exactly why, but Belt has gone from the goofy guy with all the great quotes to a Baby Giraffe of few words in recent weeks. Bruce Bochy said during his press conference how Belt always seems to give him a good at-bat when he faces a lefty, so I asked Belt about that comment and whether he thinks he has gotten better against left-handed pitching as his career has progressed or if he has always done well against southpaws.
“I’ve always been comfortable facing lefties. I know I can get up there and get a good at-bat, no matter what the result is. That’s what I was looking to do right there, and fortunately it worked out for me,” Belt said.
Now that I’ve done such a great job selling it, watch this video of Belt answering questions like a veteran!
A year ago I might have gone over and talked to Sergio Romo, who I probably spent more time interviewing than any Giants player in 2011 and 2012. This year, I haven’t talked to him once. Maybe I’m reading into things, but he’s put up a pretty obvious DON’T TALK TO ME wall around himself all season, and today was no different.
But Angel Pagan was in the mood to talk about his hamstring injury and recent cortisone shot, and by the end the entire discussion started to remind me of a high school science class. First, here’s the question I asked Pagan, followed by his answer and a video of the exchange in case you want to see and hear exactly how it went down.
You’ve been one of those everyday kind of players for Bruce Bochy, he’s talked about that a lot. He mentions Pence a lot, and you. How important was it for you to stay off of the DL with this injury?
Pagan: Oh, it’s important. I think I have a good understanding of how valuable I am for the team and I’m trying to do everything possible to stay out of the DL, because I don’t want to be out for too long. It’s something that happened, which I have no control (over). I’m just trying to treat it as much as I can so I can get back to the lineup as soon as possible.
Pagan was wearing spandex sliding shorts (not shown in the video, sorry to anyone who may be disappointed), and he pointed to the area where he received the injection: the inside part of his left knee, toward the front. That sent a couple of the reporters into a bit of a tizzy.
Pagan: It’s right there (pointing at the spot I mentioned).
Reporter: On the inside?
Reporter: Okay. It’s not the hamstring, then.
Pagan: It is. The hamstring’s attached.
Reporter: Okay, but it’s not …
Pagan: It’s the hamstring. It attaches with the tibia.
Reporter: Okay, I just didn’t know it was closer to the front of the knee.
Some guy holding a camera: It’s usually higher, right? The hamstring’s usually, when you injure a hamstring it actually winds up being a little higher.
Pagan: An injured hamstring is a hamstring. That’s a hamstring, it’s all part of the hamstring.
Me: This is an anatomy lesson.
Pagan: (looks at me and nods, with just a hint of exasperation)
And this last part has nothing to do with the clubhouse, but since Carmen has shown me the resemblance between these two pieces of art a couple times … I think she wants me to include it in a post today. And since both are beautiful displays of power, I will happily do so:
GIF from today:
Carmen’s drawing after Andres Torres broke a bat over his knee during Spring Training:
That was included in a classic post from Carmen of angry Giants venting on the field and in the dugout, a GIFs compilation you should check out if you missed it back in March.