Tag Archives: justin verlander

Game 1 of the World Series and a Manic Pixie Dream Bat

That was quite probably the greatest Game 1 of the World Series any of us could have hoped for.  Actually, probably the greatest game, period, that any of us could have hoped for.

More than a few people wrote off this game as a certain loss for the Giants and that wasn’t unreasonable – they were facing Justin Verlander, for God’s sake.  When the A’s faced JV in the final game of the ALDS, I said more than a few times, “It’s a verb.  To Verlander.  The A’s are about to get Verlander’d.”  And get Verlander’d they did.

The game we saw was a very different game, indeed.  Barry Zito stood tall while Verlander only lasted four innings and, really, his performance was a footnote compared to the performance he played a role in:  Pablo Sandoval’s three home run night.  Three home runs.  That is a lot of home runs.  Like, the number of home rums that might make me blink and pinch myself and wonder, “Am I dreaming?”

I actually wondered that a couple of times during last night’s game.  And it shouldn’t have felt as crazy as it did – the Giants just defeated the defending World Champions in the NLCS by a final of 9-0 and are every bit a solid matchup for the Tigers.  But it did feel a little surreal.  In a good way.  A very, very good way.

There’s still a good deal more work to be done and baseball to be played, but that is a Game 1 that none of us will be forgetting any time soon, I think.

Oh, and can I just throw something out there?  In a game with a lot of good candidates for “favorite moment”, my favorite moment was undoubtedly Verlander’s expression when his pitching coach came out to the mound.  That was priceless.  Seriously, seriously priceless.

Classic, JV.  Classic.

Diamond Girl

p.s.  I know Hunter Pence has gotten his fair share of needling for naming his bats, but I think it’s awesome.  (Of course I do.)  If I were a baseball player, I would totally name my bats.  Sure, my names would probably be, eh, slightly different than his, but still.

Move over, Manic Pixie Dream Girl.  We have the Manic Pixie Dream Bat.

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I #RallyZito’ed Before It Was Cool

The World Series starts tonight and the Giants are in it and that still hasn’t quite sunk in.  I am donning my antlers, just because, and pulling out my Barry Zito pumpkin photo from a few years ago.

I #RallyZito’ed before it was cool.  In other news, yes, I am most definitely a hipster.

Happy Game 1, people!  I cannot wait for this to get started.  I’m hardly even nervous.  Just excited because this is our secondtriptotheWorldSeriesinthreeyears.  If that, my friends, is not marvelous, I don’t know what is.  (Maybe Craig Ferguson monologues?  Yes.  Craig Ferguson monologues are always marvelous.  But the whole World Series thing too.)  Now let’s go get Verlander, shall we?

And post this Zito picture again, because this picture can never be posted enough.

Diamond Girl

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So, The Giants are Going to the World Series.

If there is a such a thing as an instantly classic moment, this is it. Marco Scutaro and rain and a 9-0 lead in Game 7 of NLCS in the 9th inning.

But there were so many classic moments from last night: Hunter Pence’s hit, which is probably one of the strangest and greatest you will ever seen and the fact that that was the Giants first win of a game seven in the entire franchise history. Entire franchise history. Let that sink in for a moment. In sports, we’re prone to saying, “We just saw history,” all the time, but last night was the real thing and it was glorious. Absolutely glorious.

I can’t quite figure out in my head how the Giants went from being half a game back from the Dodgers at the All Star Break to one of the last two teams standing in 2012, but I know the Dodgers got left in the dust along the way and the Reds and the Cardinals were both defeated with a nice dose of drama.

The World Series starts tomorrow in San Francisco, Barry Zito vs. Justin Verlander.

This pitching matchup has got me more excited than any in a long while and it’s such a testament to how much can change in baseball in a couple of years. I started this blog in May 2010 and was a crazy Barry Zito fan. I learned not to say that too loudly around here, because Giants fans did not like it one bit but I’m very, very happy for him. In the final game of the NLCS last night, Buster Posey was the only starting player who was out there in Game 1 of the 2010 World Series. Strange, magical.

I followed Game 1 of that 2010 World Series on a plane coming home from a couple of weeks in New York and was wearing a pair of truly wonderful boots, which I miss to this day. I also miss that starting lineup a bit, but the great thing about baseball is that if you’re very lucky, just when you think you’ve seen the greatest team you will ever see in your life as a fan, another one comes around. I’m inclined to think we are very lucky.

A few more things, real quick… I like the Tigers. Other than the Rangers, there is no AL team I’d rather be facing in the World Series. Also, MarcoScutarowastheMVPanditwasawesomebecausehetotallydeserveditandheisthebest.

World Series, here we come.

Diamond Girl

p.s. For those of you who followed my blog last postseason, you know there was an extra bit of karma in taking out the Cardinals. Game We Do Not Talk About and all that. Nicely done, Giants. Nicely done.

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Champagne and Magical Games

It’s been over a full 24 hours now since the Giants won Game 5 of the NLDS and gave themselves a spot in the NLCS and I’m still kind of in a state of disbelief.  The odds were not in the Giants favor by any stretch of the imagination but they won it… they found a way to turn the series around and slowly kill all of their fans inside and make us love them with all our hearts all the same.

I’m still not sure what happened, exactly.  I think people had started writing their post-mortem wraps when the Giants left for Cinci.  Then, slowly but surely, something clicked.  A handful of torturous and mildly horrifying games later, there was champagne and another series and Hunter Pence is the greatest motivational speaker in the history of the universe.

The odds were ever in our favor, as it turned out.

And it was magical.  It didn’t feel terribly magical at the time, because I was writhing and biting my nails, but after they got that last out, I just made myself an Italian soda and just let it sink in.  By the end of tonight, there will be four teams left and the Giants are one of them.

The A’s are not, in other Bay Area news.  They got Verlandered last night – yes, Verlander is a verb now and it means, oops, you lose – and the Yankees were the Yankees and that was that.  Yankees-Giants World Series is pretty much what I dream about on long, cold offseason days so my fingers are solidly crossed.  As you can imagine, Giants-Tigers would also set us up, you know, to be Verlandered.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.  First comes the NLCS and I cannot wait.

Popcorn and cupcakes.  Here we come.

Diamond Girl

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One Tough Act to Follow

(How cheesy is it to use an Eminem line when talking about a Detroit ballplayer?  Very cheesy indeed.)

Verlander.  One tough act to follow, no doubt about it.

Not only is he funny and sweet and humble, he also won 20+ games, went to the ALCS and then won the American League MVP today, backing up his Cy Young Award win last week.  First pitcher to do it since 1986.  (Cue the googly eyes.)

Whoa.  Whew.  And other expressions of surprise and admiration that begin with “W”.

Congratulations to Justin and the Tigers and the city of Detroit and Marshall Mathers, III, while we’re at it.  And Chrysler.  And Ford.  Actually, not Ford.  They make hideous cars.  Just Justin and the Tigers.

But can I just get all critical here, though, and suggest how mega-ly dramatic this all would have been a red carpet show?  I think I’ve said this before.  In fact, I’m sure I have.  But really, picture it.  Baseball players in wonderful silver suits and funny presenters- like, yes, myself- and major drama, camera-cutting-from-face-to-face as the announced the award winners.

Some crocodile tears wouldn’t be too bad either.

And hey, if you can get someone who happens to be Jennifer Lopez to wear a sparkly bodysuit and drive around in a weird car on stage?  That’s even better.

But why or why or why do the Rangers insist on Neftali starting and then put a knife to his back and make him pretend to like it (looking at you, Jon Daniels Knife Bearer)?  Speaking of drama.

Diamond Girl

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