Bengie Molina

Braden, Buster and stolen cable

I haven’t seen the Giants or A’s play in nearly a week on television, unless you count that replay I saw yesterday on the TV above the checkout area of my local overpriced boutique grocery store. I bought an apple tart yesterday to take to the Mother’s Day party, and it was delicious. The replay I saw while buying said tart? Andres Torres misplaying that flyball in the wind at CitiStick Park. Killer.

Apparently someone was stealing our cable and Internet connection, and our jimmy-rigged line crapped out on Wednesday due to “signal leakage,” which for some reason reminded me of potato chips with that “Olestra” stuff. So my baseball intake has been limited to KNBR and updates from my cousin’s iPhone yesterday at the BBQ I brought that apple tart to.

But they say when one sense is taken away (TV = EYES), the other senses get stronger. So through the power of listening to Dave Flemming, Mychael Urban and Marty Lurie, the world of baseball has not been forgotten. And through the power of watching my neighbor’s TV while she was in Austin (hey, we were watching her dog — she OWED it to us), I was able to watch the Lakers’ 1-point win over the Jazz in Game 3 and the Sharks series-ending win against Detroit. Let’s wrap up the weekend, starting with the guy I pretty much 8-Mile’d on Friday. And no, I don’t really know what that last sentence means.

— Forget the unifying aspects of Dallas Braden’s perfect game on Mother’s Day, with his grandma in attendance just a few years after Dallas lost his mom to skin cancer in his senior year of high school. Great story, not much to add to that. But how about how Braden has brought everyone together in their dislike of Alex Rodriguez? Besides aging blond celebrities in need of a paparazzi boost, is there a person out there who actually likes him?

— Weird that the Rays have had two perfect games thrown against them in the last year. I still want Carl Crawford, though.

— I know this is sacrilege, and would probably get me banned from McCovey Chronicles if I went on there and dared post this, but I’d trade Buster Posey to the Rays for Crawford in a heartbeat (not that this trade has even in the least bit been discussed by either party). I know Posey’s a Major League hitter now, but I’d gladly give up a .310 hitter with 15-20 homer potential for a World Series this season.

— To those who would only trade Posey if it meant landing a legit cleanup hitter, which cleanup hitter would you target? And would that guy make sense at AT&T Park? The sooner the Giants focus on speedy guys with gap power, the better off they will be. Slow mashers aren’t the type of players who succeed in San Francisco, and they wouldn’t be happy here anyway.

— And that would mean Mark DeRosa is where he probably should have been all along: the bench. Then perhaps his wrist could get better and the Giants’ glaring lack of speed (am I obsessing?) could be remedied.

— Sure, you could make the team a lot faster by replacing Bengie Molina with Posey, but on a team with pitching this good you have to please the staff. And after reading Tim Lincecum’s comments on the matter, it’s tough to argue with keeping Molina around, maybe even for another year. Just don’t bat him cleanup, please.

— Bullpens are getting way too sensitive these days. Use them all the time and they’re too exhausted to be effective as the season goes along. If the starting pitchers last more than seven innings per start too often (like the Giants’ starters have this season), the bullpen gets rusty.

— Too bad Sergio Romo doesn’t have a fastball and hangs around the plate a little too much, because he’s so easy to root for. Loved Brian Murphy’s interview last week, for a couple reasons. Romo’s as anti-cliche as you can get and displays immense passion, and Murphy asked an outstanding question early on in the interview, mentioning how the fans and Murphy himself were openly wondering whether it was time to replace Romo with Guillermo Mota as the primary right-handed setup man.

— All’s not bad in the pen, though. In fact, we have to prepare for a world where Brian Wilson is the best closer in Giants history. Maybe not the most dominant (Robb Nen’s K/BB ratio as a Giant was 453/113 in 378.1 IP) or the most entertaining (Rod Beck, duh), but he should have the most saves and strikeouts of any full-time closer in team history before he flees San Francisco to become a Padre or something.

— Wilson’s already fifth all-time in saves as a Giant with 93 (Nen leads with 206 while Beck’s in second with 199), and while Wilson gives up his fair share of hits (.319 opponents’ batting avg. in his career) but he keeps guys in the yard (12 homers allowed in 200.2 IP). Like him or hate him, he’s become a top 10 closer, and now that “Life of Brian” is no more and he keeps successfully completing 1+ inning saves, it’s a lot easier to like him.

— Finally watched No Country For Old Men over the weekend, and I’ll put it this way: it didn’t make me miss my stolen cable any less. I’d rather watch the Atlanta Hawks play another playoff game than force myself to sit through that overrated, tedious Cohen Brothers production again. Even on Blu-Ray.

— Anybody else think LeBron James is looking at the 2010 NBA Playoffs as the last chance for his teammates to prove they’re good enough to wear uniforms that match his?

— And why is it that when LeBron plays passively he’s a great teammate, and when Kobe does it he’s a selfish, petulant crybaby only concerned with flexing his ego?

— And why is it that when LeBron plays aggressively he’s asserting his dominance, but when Kobe does the same he’s a ballhog?

— That said, Kobe needs to retire the underbite. He’s at his most intimidating when he’s expressionless and nailing 20-foot fallaway jumpers with a hand in his face. These facial gesticulations he started trying out during last year’s playoffs look as out of place as a youth group leader sporting a new tattoo.

— Of course, Kobe’s probably just hoping everyone forgets about that LA Mag photo shoot where he looks like a character in Tyler Perry’s Alice in Wonderland. No such luck.

— Carlos Boozer, stop YELLING EVERY SINGLE PLAY. Please. He shoots and is fouled. AHHHHHH! He shoots and isn’t fouled. AHHHHHH! He grabs a rebound. AHHHHHH! Someone else grabs a rebound. AHHHHHH! His chest hair gets caught in Pau Gasol’s beard. AHHHHHH! (Actually, that does sound pretty horrifying. AHHHHHH!)

— Maybe Boozer’s just upset after realizing that the 2010 Utah Jazz are the ugliest team since those Sacramento Kings squads from the early 2000’s, even with Mehmet Okur nowhere to be seen. Sorry Andrei Kirilenko, your Justin Bieber hair isn’t working.

— One clue that the San Jose Sharks’ fanbase isn’t a normal Bay Area fanbase: in a Sports Illustrated poll of NHL players, HP Pavilion was named as the toughest place to play.

— I knew something was up after the Colorado Avalanche won that game in overtime and that female Sharks fan gave the ‘Lanche the double-bird through the glass.

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