Tomorrow I was planning on covering 49ers training camp practice instead of my fifth Giants game in five days. Pretty safe to say tonight’s game didn’t change my mind.
I’m not sure what happened on that plane ride back from Philly, but the Giants all look like they licked their tray tables and contracted mono. Or maybe they just started playing good teams again after winning series against the D-Backs, Marlins and Phillies. Nah, that couldn’t be it. It’s mono. Or Hep B. Or a combination of the two, fighting over control of each player’s liver.
Facing great pitching isn’t a real excuse, not if you have designs on making the postseason and advancing a round or two. Tipping your caps to Cole Hamels, Zack Greinke and Clayton Kershaw is one thing, but Vance Worley — despite an ERA that dropped to 2.54 after pitching a three-hitter — is VANCE WORLEY!
“Just goes to show you, anybody who’s on that mound is a Major League pitcher. When he’s on, he’s tough. Still, I know we’ve got to find a way to get these bats going,” said Bruce Bochy.
“Tonight, we didn’t do anything.”
Lately Bochy’s gotten a lot of practice showing the world how even-keeled he can be after his team plays like a bunch of dudes who were previously found lying in doorways of Tenderloin hotels.
I kind of feel like writing a fantasy football mock draft instead of pressing on with this. Adrian Peterson is on the clock! No?
Why is this team 28-29 at home, after going 6-20 in their last 27 games at the park that Bonds built?
“I wish I had the answer to that. There’s no reason I can give you. It’s a park we’ve played very well in. But if you look at our struggles the last three weeks or so, they’ve been at home. For the life of me, I can’t figure out why. I know they can’t,” Bochy said.
“That’s what’s got me buffaloed a little bit, all of us, is our struggles at home.”
The tide is starting to turn here, and the undertow is stronger than it looks. Some guy ran out onto the field after the game and got tackled by security, but only 10,000 people were still around to point and cackle. The sellout streak is probably in jeopardy. If it’s not, it should be.
Kiss cam, and I’m pretty sure a guy just shook his head and said “that’s my daughter.” It’s that kind of night here at AT&T Park.
— Bay Area Sports Guy (@BASportsGuy) July 29, 2014
I’m still not sure what happened in the first inning. Alright, it’s clear what happened — walks, singles, sac flies and a throwing error on Madison Bumgarner, who only lasted four innings after throwing 42 pitches before the Giants came to the plate. But it was just weird. Bumgarner is supposed to be this team’s ace, and he looked exhausted throughout.
He said he’s felt as strong during these last three starts as he has all season. But ever since the team returned from that four-game series in Philly, the Giants have moved with the speed and grace of 10,000 Priuses on Highway 101 during a rainstorm. Did that series sap their energy?
“I really don’t think so. It’s hard to argue that on our side, because it certainly looks that way. But I don’t think it has. I don’t think it has anything to do with that. If anything, it should have kind of propelled us into that series against the Dodgers and now the Pirates. For whatever reason, the ball hasn’t bounced our way,” Bumgarner said.
— I’m going to go ahead and blame the Yahoo yodel.
— Worley threw 100 pitches in nine innings, 10 more than Bumgarner threw in four.
— Gregor Blanco singled to lead off the sixth. With the Giants down 5-0, he was caught stealing with one out.
“I think he surprised all of us. He thought he was going to make something happen there. Five runs down, and he’s pretty quick to home plate. Martin throws pretty well. There was nothing on, I can tell you that,” said Bochy, with a hint of that same not-happy-at-all-smile he flashed when asked to talk about Yasiel Puig’s performance on Friday night.
— I wrote a “Giants buyers guide” where I listed as many of the position players they’ve been linked to in trade rumors that I could. Then they went out and played like this. I’d say to prepare for my, “Giants sellers guide: the vets you used to love who’ll get flipped for prospects” tomorrow, but that’d be a lie. I’ll be watching football that doesn’t count tomorrow morning, and not a moment too soon.