The Week That Was:
Won 1, lost 1 against the Blue Jays.
Won 2, lost 1 against the Diamondbacks.
33-29 for the season; tied for 2nd in the NL West.
The Week That Will Be:
Tue: at Pittsburgh against the Pirates.
Wed: at Pittsburgh against the Pirates.
Thu: at Pittsburgh against the Pirates.
Fri: at Atlanta against the Braves.
Sat: at Atlanta against the Braves.
Sun: at Atlanta against the Braves.
The G-men had Monday off, which was good because they're not getting another break until the 27th. They were in Phoenix though, which sucked. I've never been to Phoenix so I can't say for certain that it's a miserable town in which to spend a precious day off, but I've been told by someone from Phoenix that it's a town populated by people who think San Bernadino County wasn't classy enough. Louis CK said people from Phoenix call themselves "Phoenicians." He's a comedian, so that's gotta be a joke, right? Please tell me it's a joke.
The Giants haven't been a very good road team this year--they're 12-18 when outside the comfort and confines of home. When they took 2 of 3 from the Diamondbacks in Phoenix this past weekend, it was the first time they won a road series since May 1, which also happened to be against the Snakes. One ridiculously, overly-simplified path to the playoffs is to take 2 of 3 from home and win half the road games. Currently, the Giants' winning percentage at home is .656 and is .400 on the road. If they're going to improve on that latter number, now is as good a time as any--their next six games are in Pittsburgh and Atlanta.
We love PacBell Park (I know that's not its official name anymore, but let's just all agree to call it PacBell anyway, shall we?). When PacBell was being designed, the backdrop beyond the outfield was supposed to be downtown. But San Francisco in the summer at 8PM being what it is, UC Davis engineers told the Giants' brass that they'd better reorient the park to go with the wind, rather than against it. It worked out pretty well, too. One happy result of rotating the park was home runs splashing into the drink at McCovey Cove. These splash hits have become a San Francisco signature, and whenever they were shown on ESPN, the entire country knew we had the prettiest park in all the land.
This is heresy, but Pittsburgh's PNC Park is prettier. I mean, look at it! There's the downtown skyline, the Allegheny River, and a little yellow bridge! When I first saw it on TV, my jaw dropped. Then I raged with jealousy. I still do. That's how PacBell was supposed to look. How dare they.
There was, however, solace in knowing that it was the Pirates that played there. Oh, those Pirates. Last year, the Pirates were oh-so-close to reaching a goal they hadn't attained since 1992--to win 80 games. Since 1992, when they finished in 1st place in the NL East with 96 wins, the Pirates haven't had a single winning season. Not a one. Now, I don't want to say it had anything to do with San Francisco, but
In 1993, San Francisco's prodigal son came home. After having been voted into the All-Star Game in 1990 and 1992, winning Gold Gloves in 1990-1992, selected as the NL MVP in 1990 and 1992, and leading the Pirates to the NLCS in 1990-1992, Barry Bonds left Pittsburgh to put on the jersey of his father and godfather--Barry Bonds was a Giant. In 1993, in his first year in San Francisco, Barry Bonds was voted into another All-Star Game, won another Gold Glove, and was once again the NL MVP. And the Pirates finished in 5th place.
Which takes us to Atlanta. Remember 1993? Remember that one time in 1993 when the Giants won 103 games and how funny it was when the Braves won 104? Remember how hilarious it was that the ATLANTA Braves were in the National League's WEST Division? Oh, oh, oh, and remember the good times we all had when the Giants were chasing that 104th win but got destroyed on the last day of the season to the Dodgers?! Haha, remember that?! Ah, memories! No matter how years pass, some memories just won't go away.
Let's think of this week's road trip as a reunion of old friends. Has it been 20 years already? So much has happened since then. The Pirates went on to become the worst team in baseball and the Braves became one of the best. And here come the Giants, just passing through, saying hello, polishing two World Series trophies--you know how fussy Tiffany silver can be. It's good to see that everyone's doing well this year--Pittsburgh is in 2nd place in their division, as are the Giants, and Atlanta is in 1st in theirs. Pittsburgh, we're proud of you. You overtake St. Louis and we'll catch up to Arizona, and Atlanta, you just stay sitting pretty over there in the East (where you belong), and let's all promise to meet up again in October. And when we do, let's raise a glass to old times. To 1993.