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Braun Graciously Praised Bumgarner, Guys.

I can’t actually find a time on last night’s Giants game in Milwaukee, but it was either really long or it felt really long.  Which kind of amount to the same thing: me biting my nails, eating pasta, eating gummy butterflies (by the way?  Gummy butterflies > gummy bears.  It’s been proven.) and eventually going to sleep with a smile on my face.

It was an up-and-down one, kicking off with a Buster Posey three-run shot in the first inning and then a whole bunch of triples and things.  Apparently, even when the Brewers sacrilegiously open the roof against Ryan Braun’s wishes, there is pop in Milwaukee.  Braun himself, actually, launched a homer in the eighth to tie the game up and then promptly gave what might be my favorite quote of the year.  It’s only May, so Jon Daniels and Michael Young still have a while to catfight in public and give awesome quotes, but for now?  It’s this one, from MLB.com:

Braun graciously praised Bumgarner.

“He was good, man,” Braun said. “He’s been one of the best pitchers, I think, in the National League since he’s been in the big leagues. His cutter was really on tonight. It’s his best pitch, and when he’s throwing it well, he’s definitely pretty tough to get runs against.”

That’s like when Taylor Swift and Taylor Lautner are in a movie together and all of the screaming fans have seizures from the combination of the two Taylor’s on screen together.  Never mind the wacky analogy, but you know what I mean.  Braun graciously praising Bumgarner is that scale of epic-combo.  Probably higher scale, actually, but I don’t want to the Taylor fans to descend and murder me.

Anyway!  It was Hector Sanchez, of stealing Chris Stewart and Eli Whiteside’s jobs’ fame, who eventually hit the game-winning homer in the 14th and gave the Gigantes the win.  He is rapidly growing on me.  In other news, since when do the catchers hit loads for this team?  Not looking a gift horse in the mouth, but it’s kind of taking me a little time to get used to.

In other Bay Area sports news, the Warriors announced they will be moving to a new arena in San Francisco from Oakland in 2017.  Which is great for them, aside from the unfortunate little detail about the world ending in December 2012.  Then again, if the world does not end, they could always get the pop-up arena from London after the Olympics.  Either way, new arena?  Not necessary, guys.  Not necessary at all.

Diamond Girl

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Priorities, Priorities

Today, for once, my optimism is not hare-brained.  (I so want that phrase to be “hair-brained”, by the way, you do not even know.  Said with a hair flip, of course, because hair flips are ze best.)   Why?  Well, because our very own Madison Bumgarner is on the mound at Chase Field.  Aside from his obvious pitching skills, he’s also a darn good hitter and we are in desperate – and I mean desperate ­­­– need of a darn good hitter.  If it’s the Baby Moose or whatever we call him now who can deliver the spectacular with-RISP-hit, I will not object in the least.

I just Googled “baby moose” and guys, they are seriously strange looking creatures.  But I do totally see the resemblance.  Okay, maybe “totally” is an overstatement.  I kinda see the resemblance.

On a somewhat unrelated note, the Giants announced a tweet-up for this season, meaning a pregame event for their Twitter followers, for those who do not know these things.  I was intrigued for a grand total of twenty five seconds, before I saw that “food and drinks will be available for purchase” (can’t lie, I was hoping for free garlic fries) and the tickets are going for a cool $60.00+.  Unfortunately, meeting @GiantsFan22222 is not worth that to me.  I have cupcake ingredients and fab orange heels to think about and save up for.  Not to mention, you know, college and stuff.  But a hearty have-fun to everyone who does decide to go!

Excuse me while I slip into my fab orange heels… what?  Trying to make you regret your choice?  What a thought.

Diamond Girl

p.s.  Holy Josh Hamilton 4-Homer night, in case I did not say this before!  And also, Holy Tim Lincecum Haircut!  Every start, I am surprised by it.  It’s beginning (beginning?) to get weird.

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The Odds Were Ever In Their Favor

So that was a mixed bag, hm?  (Bag meaning game, of course.  Not a literal bag, guys.)  The Giants edged out a win at 5-2 and in the process, snapped the four-game losing streak.  Plus Ryan Braun hit a homer, so I can’t really complain.  MadBum is quickly proving himself to be the surprisingly fantastic one, although it isn’t really surprising at all.  Still, who predicted him to be the designated stopper in 2012, plus hit splendid RBI doubles?  If you did, feel free to raise your hand.  Fresh brownies are waiting to be sent over to you via the World Wide Web if you have proof.  If nobody comes out of the woodwork, then I will just assume that we are all surprised.  It’s not that he hasn’t been fantastic in the past, because he has been.  But sighing with relief when he takes the mound?  That’s new, at least for me.

Angel Pagan is also making himself known to Giants fans and call me crazy, but I am totally seeing a little rivalry between him and Andres Torres, who were traded for each other over the winter.  Torres has gotten a hit and RBI in every game since coming off the DL in New York and Pagan is currently sporting a 19 game hitting streak.  Remember when Uribe and Huff used to hit back-to-back homers (sort of) all the time?  Friendly rivalries, even if imagined by crazy fans like me, are terribly fun.

Speaking of Huff.  If you haven’t read this piece where he discussed his anxiety disorder with the Chronicle’s Henry Schulman, read it now.  Seriously.  Not only is it very touching, it’s also informative.  As before, we (okay, I here) at Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend wish him all the best and hope that everything goes up from here.

The game today was interesting to me, in that all of the issues from the past few days and the season so far, really, were still there, but they did get that win, by luck or by skill.  Baseball is funny like that, isn’t it?  There weren’t really fundamental changes, aside from a few choice hits with RISP.  More like the odds being ever in their favor.

I admit it.  I said that just for the Hunger Games nod.  But still.

Diamond Girl

p.s.  Yesterday, Rivera said to the media, “I’m coming back. Write it down in big letters. I’m not going out like this.”  You. Do. Not. Even. Know. How. Tempted. I. Am.  (To write it down in big letters, that is.  If I can find a big enough piece of paper, I am totally doing that tomorrow.)

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Dear Giants: My Fab Advice for Things to Do in NYC

I should, by rights, be in a wonderful mood today.  Yesterday worked out pretty smashingly for the Giants and Cain went out and proved that Bumgarner is not the only person in the history of the universe to do well after signing a contract.

But I’m not in a good mood.  Not at all.  I’m in a decidedly glowering mood at the moment.  See, I have an undeveloped sense of appreciation for off days, although I’m sure the players appreciate them loads so I should be happy for them.  And it’s not helping to see all the Giants-related people hitting up New York City.  I have a strong inner New Yorker, in case you haven’t noticed that yet.  I consider it my second home, although I’m not sure that particular feeling is mutual.  I am jealous.  I admit it.  Very, very.

Instead of just glowering though, I am going to try to channel this into something positive.  In honor of the Giants roadtrip, I am featuring my fab advice for things to do in NYC along a few (equally fab) photos of it.  Terrible excuse to something I just want to do?  Heck yes.  But it’s going to be educational and stuff too, so no complaining.  I know most of the Giants have been to the city before, but I bet they’ve never done this stuff.  Consider this my contribution of culture to the team.

5.  Silver Moon Bakery in Manhattan.  It’s a bit out of the way and terribly difficult to spot, even once you’re in the area, but believe me when I say, it is worth it.  Completely.   Dee-lish-us.

4.  Fort Tryon Park in Manhattan.  If you’re a Bay Area-er like me and used to some quiet, open space at arm’s reach, you may go a little crazy in the city.  Central Park is marvelous, but it doesn’t count as open space.  So if you’re willing to trek up the island to Fort Tryon Park, you will be very glad you did.  Trees, paths and a view of the river.  Luv-er-lee.

3.  The Cloisters in Manhattan.  This museum is likely one of the best you will see in your life and it’s in Fort Tryon Park, actually.  Two birds with one stone, as they say.  It is a part of the Met and the building is beautiful and interesting and smells like buttered pastries.  The art is pretty wonderful, too.  But mostly the buttery pastry smell is unmatchable.  Go-there-now.

2.  Central Park Carousel in Manhattan.  Be forewarned, they have beastly hours and are impossible to contact and yes, it’s a tourist trap.  But you will adore it anyway.  Ah-door.

1.  Walk in Manhattan.  Walk the length of the island, if you can.  The subway is glorious, but there’s nothing like just walking up and down and running into designer shops on the East Side and avoiding the seriously scary old ladies who are armed with hand dogs on the West Side.  Bee-ware and in-joy.

By the way, yes, they’re all in Manhattan.  I haven’t quite got Brooklyn et al. down yet.  I am working on, though.  If anyone wants to sponsor my research, don’t be shy.  Give me the plane ticket and things and I will be there in a jiffy.  Jiffy jiffy.

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I feel a bit better now.  Channeling negative energy into positive things is… positive.  Deep philosophy from Diamond Girl for the month.  Take note.

Diamond Girl

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6 Impossible Things After Breakfast, the Giants Version

I admit it: the title was just an excuse to link to a scene from one of my favorite movies in recent history.  It has Christopher Lee’s voice and Danny Elfman’s music and Helena Bonham Carter with a massive head, need I really say more?

It’s also rather inspirational, as one of the YouTube commenters remarks in a rare moment of lucidity.  Commenters on YouTube tend to be a little bit, er, off their heads, to just continue with the Alice-in-Wonderland-ness, but I completely agree with this one.  I mean, if Alice can slay the jabberwocky, then the Giants can beat the Phillies, right?  Piece of cake, people.  Seriously.  The Phillies are not ten times their size and they don’t have Christopher Lee’s voice (important?  Yes.) and they don’t have those huge, spiky wings, either.  They seem like fuzzy teddy bears, by comparison.  And the Giants just proved that last night, with a 4-2 victory to even up the series.  The last game is tonight and Pat Burrell is not throwing out the first pitch again, so it’s sure to get off to a better start.  (That was my last Pat Burrell snark for a while.  Promise.  Maybe.)

Anyhow, there really was a point to that title, believe it or not, beyond talking about Tim Burton’s fabulousness.  I am going to make a list now, ‘k?  ‘K.  You know how I love making lists.  Here we go.  Six Impossible Things After Breakfast, the Giants Version.

6.  Brian Wilson who?  Santiago Casilla is clean-shaven and he can pitch.  The pitching part is a plus.  The clean-shaven thing is so very important I cannot even put it into words.   No one ever said my priorities were completely straight.

5.  Madison Bumgarner may be the first person in recent memory to actually sign a nice-sized contract and then do well.  Okay, maybe not the first.  But it’s rare, y’all and I was pretty impressed.  Maybe it has something to do with his, eh, interesting background.  If you have a while to spare between watching cat videos on YouTube or whatever and reading my blog, you should probably check this article out.

4.  Pat Burrell was there and the Giants won!   Shocking.  (I had my fingers virtually crossed up when I promised that up there.  Accept my sincere-ish apologies.)

3.  I missed Bruce Bochy’s birthday.  Facebook is supposed to remind me about these things!  Again, apologies.  Happy Belated, Bruce’s Head.  That is, Bruce.

2.  Novel #4, which is a magical realism story about death, has all sorts of strange baseball lingo mixed in.  Because I write while I listen to games, when I’m in a time crunch.  It’s an… interesting effect, to say the least.

1.  The Giants can slay the… I mean, beat the, Phillies.  This blog does not endorse slaying.  Usually.  Except in circumstances of people who vote on the Academy Awards and always vote wrong.  You are welcome to slay them.  Just try not to mention that I was involved.

Diamond Girl

p.s.  In the category of non-impossible things, the Rangers beat the Red Sox 18-3 at Fenway.  My smile stretches from San Francisco to Boston and back again. 

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