(By E. Chang)
The Week That Was:
Won 3, lost 0 against the Diamondbacks.
Won 3, lost 0 against the Dodgers.
19-12 for the season.
The Week That Will Be:
3 games at home against the Phillies.
4 games at home against the Braves.
Pac Bell Park (now AT&T Park, of course) opened in 2000. The Giants started that season on the road, going 3-4 before coming home to christen their new jewel-box of a stadium. Around 40,930 fans packed into Pac Bell, and could not believe how lucky they were to be the first fans to watch the first official home game in the prettiest ballpark in all the land, and against the Bums from LA, no less. Thousands more gathered outside, trying to sneak a peek through the fence at right field or strolling along McCovey Cove or catching the game at Zeke's. It was one of those days that reminded all Giants fans that life was good and we deserve be happy.
And then we got punched in the face.
The Dodgers got the first hit.
The Dodgers got the first home run. And the second. And the third.
The Dodgers got the first win. And the second. And the third.
Swept. By the Dodgers. And the hate in my heart grew.
Nothing will ever get rid of the taste of the acid reflux that was those three days, but a week like this past one helps. Six games, six wins. From 3rd place in the NL West to 2nd place, to 1st place. And a sweep of the Dodgers at home. The only thing that would have made this week perfect would be if the Dodgers ended up in last place. They're almost there, and if they continue to try as hard as they are at the moment, they'll get there soon enough, God bless their hearts.
The story of the past week has been the come-from-behind, walk-off nature of the wins. In the Arizona series, it was the San Francisco Zoo that came up big. In the first game, the Baby Giraffe hit a game-winning 2-run single in the 8th. In the second game, it was Panda, who hit a walk-off 2-run homer in the 9th. It was Baby Giraffe again in the third game, and again in the 8th, this time with a 3-run homerun to win the game.
Then the Dodgers. Clayton Kershaw is a damned good pitcher. In his seven starts this season, he's thrown three shutouts. His ERA for the season is 1.66. Opposing batters are hitting .174 against him. He's also a kid. Born in 1988. 25 years old. His dad died a few days before his game against the Giants. Kershaw flew home to Texas to bury his father and then to San Francisco where he hit a double and allowed the Giants only one run off three hits in seven innings. 25 years old.
Buster Posey got the hit that brought in that one run. Posey later won the game in the 9th with a walk-off home run. He then went on to rain on a parade.
The next game, another Giants catcher hit another walk-off home run, this time in the bottom of the 10th. Guillermo Quiroz. Apparently he's a Giant. Huh. Who knew?
And finally, in the third game, it was the Dodgers who were playing catch up, down 4-0 before scoring three in the 8th inning. Three is less than four, so they lost.
Since that dreadful opening homestand in April of 2000, the Giants have hosted the Dodgers 117 times. Coming into this series, the Dodgers were the only National League team with a winning record against the Giants at the Park, having gone 60-57. With this sweep, the Giants have evened it up, 60-60. No, we haven't forgotten that inaugural series, but yes, a week like this past one helps.
Also, the Warriors.