After spending the week in the press box, I watched Saturday afternoon’s Spring Training battle between the San Francisco Giants and the Oakland A’s from the bleachers. The Giants’ bats looked more alive than they have since I arrived on Monday, and the Giants prevailed 7-2.
Lots of scoring for the Giants, with home runs from Ryan Theriot, Angel Pagan and Pablo Sandoval. Not as much scoring in Section E of the bleachers where my wife and I sat, although plenty of well-sauced patrons tried their damndest.
It’s pretty hard to figure out a more drinky combination than Spring Training and St. Patrick’s Day. NASCAR and the 4th of July? Nick Nolte and Charlie Sheen? Bay 2 Breakers and good weather?
The weather’s kind of weird right now in Scottsdale, and since there’s a 90% chance of rain tomorrow this Spring Training experience is probably over for me since we’re taking an early-morning flight home on Monday. The Giants went 4-1-1 during my stay, the established guys look like they always do, Buster Posey looks pretty close to being fully ready for the season, and the Giants look faster and more energized than at the same time last season. I’ll drink to that.
Pictures of pitchers (and other guys, too)
— People were absolutely wasted today. St. Patrick’s Day brought green hats for the home team (the A’s remain the only big league team that’s always ready for March 17) and people were definitely in the spirit in the stands, helped in part by this guy:
— I didn’t get a photo of Angel Pagan’s home run, but it was fun watching him run from second to third (even if he didn’t end up scoring).
He only played two games while I was here, but in those games Pagan went 4-for-8, hit for the cycle (over two games, but whatever), stole a base, made a diving catch and almost replicated Willie Mays’ “Catch.” And in nobody-cares-about-this-but-the-media news, he’s an intelligent guy who’s a pleasure to interview.
— Nate Schierholtz threw someone out at the plate again today.
— Tim Lincecum almost stepped on the foul line today, but caught himself…
— Check out this release. Was this a screwball?
— You don’t think about these plays when you see them on TV, but it takes foresight to not get hit by a throw from Pablo Sandoval.
— A couple more photos of Lincecum, because why the hell not?
— Has anyone thought about replacing the current Major League Baseball logo with something like this? If MLB wants to attract younger fans, they could do worse than making Lincecum their version of Jerry West (although it would be impossible to capture the look in his eyes).