Tag Archives: ryan braun

5 Things I Am Loving About the Playoffs

For whatever reason, the playoffs bring out the non-verbal barbarian in me, so…

5.  This.  Antlers.

4.  This.  Beltre.

3.  This.  Brauny.

2.  This.  Verlander.

1.  This.  Granderson.

Diamond Girl

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The Verdict, So Far

My accidental blogging vacation (read:  I was sleeping all weekend and forgot to write anything) is over and the playoffs and their pumpkin/cinnamon/cranberry scent are gaining steam.  And yes, making me hungry.   All things considered, it’s going pretty well, from my perspective.  As it stands:

Milwaukee leads series again Arizona, 2-0

Verdict:  Very good!  Awesome!  Fantastic!  And other words of a blissfully affirmative nature. 

Philadelphia is tied with St. Louis, 1-1

Verdict:  Well, whoever wins this, can get crushed by the Crew in the NLCS.  Ideally, that would be the Phillies.  (Picture: Braun going 3-3 with 3 homers against Cliffy.)

Tampa Bay and Texas are tied, 1-1

Verdict:  Texas has momentum now.  It’s only going to get better from here on out.  Repeat that 100 times and then come back to me, okay?

Detroit and New York are tied, 1-1

Verdict:  Good.  Because this is a good matchup and one that makes me question my loyalties for (nearly) every waking moment.  So a tie means more good games.  And more indecisiveness on my part.  Decide for yourself if that part is good.  Jorge Posada’s triple- by which he proved my belief that age only matters if you’re wine or cheese or something- certainly helped the Yankees cause in my eyes.  Doesn’t he just rule?

Overall verdict:

I would give this whole thing so far four and a half stars, except for the bizarre start times.  I am sorely tempted to write Bud Selig a new post-it, demanding that he change the start times so I don’t continually miss the beginnings of games, but I am trying to spare y’all.  You’re welcome.

Diamond Girl

p.s  I still love u, Ryan Braun.  And if Kirk Gibson picks on you and claims you didn’t tag third again, I will totally fistfight him.

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162 Things I Loved About 2011 In San Francisco Giants-Land

In no particular order, in honor of the 162 games of the regular season…

162.  The walk-off on Opening Day for the second consecutive year.  And provided some awesome entertainment along the way as I drove to Fresno to see the Grizzlies Opening Night.

161.  The new and improved Pablo Sandoval.

160.  The rather awesome drama and content they provided for their reality show.

159.  Heck, they had a reality show!

158.  They carried first place for a good long while, even though they didn’t finish with it.

157.  They had All Stars.  A whole bunch of them.

156.  They gave me bragging rights for life.   We got Carlos Beltran.  (Never mind what happened afterwards.)

155.  They kinda massacred the Chamber of Horrors, aka Coors Field.

155.  NATE.  That is all.

154.  Their hitting coach who takes, “Reach for the moon, if you fall down, at least you’ll fall in the stars” very literally.  Like, he’s-going-to-the-moon literally.  It’s sure to bode well for the offense in the future.

153.  They chewed gum at the White House.  It was strangely endearing.

152.  Heck, they went to the White House!

151.  They were so resilient I can’t even express it in words.  Well, maybe I could.  But I have a whole lot more of these to write, so I’m not going to get into it.

150.  Santiago Casilla and his epic and previously undiscovered closing skills.

149.  Brett.                                   

148.  And Brandon.

147.  And, oh, the other Brandon too.

145.  The multitude of B’s!

144.  The incredibly pleasant surprise that was Eric Surkamp in his first start back.

142.  And the incredibly pleasant surprise that was Ryan Vogelsong all around.

141.  Chris Stewart.  And his brainiac-ness.  And his overall awesomeness.

140.  The fact that AT&T Park exists and is amazingly beautiful.  Pays to remember that, every now and then, right?

139.  D-Ro having a few more special moments.  I really hope he’s back next year in some way.

138.  Madison and his trademarked first inning meltdowns.  And yes, that he was otherwise amazing.

137.  Bruce Bochy.  ‘Nuff said.

136.  Conor Gillaspie(The name!  The name!)

135.  Those special little moments when Guillermo Mota came in for long relief and just saved us all.

134.  Getting to see Travis Ishikawa one last time, when he got his ring.

133.  OH!  Yes!  The ring ceremony…

132 …and the mismatched, mint colored boxes the rings came in…

131. …and Sergio Romo goofing off at the ceremony…

130.  …and seeing Nuekom with his adorable bowtie there (though, unfortunately, it wasn’t orange) one more time.

129.  There was also Vogey’s lovely little speech when he got the Willie Mac Award.  

128.  Remember when Tim Flannery, third base coach, sang the National Anthem?  Epic.

127.  The crazy thunder storm/rain delay in Detroit.  And the way the broadcasters filled the empty time.  That was magical.

126.  Kepp’s walk-off vs. the Astros.  So there, Houston.

124.  Crawford’s grand-slam in his first game against Milwaukee.  Remember that?  Goosebumps and smiles.

123.  The prank Ross et al. played on Huff.  Which we got to see because of aforementioned reality show.

122.  Did I mention, THE GIANTS HAD A REALITY SHOW?

121.  When Brandon Belt met a baby giraffe and took pictures with it.  That may actually be my favorite moment of the entire year.  Seriously, how utterly fantastic?

120.  That they never missed a beat, even after the loss of Posey and then Sanchez.

119.  Timmy back to being Timmy, for the most part.

118.  And Timmy and Matt Cain both reached 1000th career strikeouts, which was fabulous.

117.  Finishing ahead of the Padres.  Vendetta?  Yes, vendetta.

116.  Romo shaving.  Because that may imply that other people will shave soon.

115.  coughcoughBrianWilsoncoughcough

114.  NATE.   Again.

113.  And Nate’s upper deck shot in Colorado that his brother got.  Too many awesome things about that to mention.

112.  Slightly irrelevant, maybe, but Jon Miller not doing ESPN any more meant that he broadcasted for KNBR on the weekends.  Which was enough to make the season, right there.

111.  Together, We’re Giant.  It actually grew on me.  (But It’s Time is still, and always will be, better.)

110.  The “sellouts”.  Because they seriously cracked me up.  Especially when the upper deck was e-m-p-t-y.

109.  The little Sabean moment in Moneyball.   When Billy Beane totally played the Giants.  My rational mind was outraged and the rest of me was snickering.

108.  Watching Pablo’s defense just reappear before our very eyes.

107.  Being there for Carlos Beltran’s 300th career homerun.

106.  And speaking of homeruns… Brandon Belt had a couple to remember.

105.  And when Brandon Belt made the club out of spring training and it felt like nothing could possibly go wrong.

104.  The fact that some people didn’t get injured.  Can’t think of any?  No, I’m sure there were a few.

103.  The fact that Aubrey Huff always has good years after bad ones.  Most definitely.  This bodes well for 2012.

102.  While I hated that the cost for parking doubled, I think it was because they won the World Series. And I do love that.  So, by extension, I love the new parking rates.  Sort of.

101.  The Churros guy.  If you’ve ever been to a Major League ballpark, you know what I mean.

100-50. Looking at the new lineup every day, usually with my mouth gaping wide open.

49.  The few nice Zito moments.  They were there.  And they were smile-inducing.

48.  The fact that the year after the championship, while it wasn’t exactly a success, was not a collapse either.  This was a pennant race right down until the end.

47.  Can I just say one more thing about Chris Stewart?  His first Major League homerun rocked.

46.  When Edgar came back, if only for a bit.  *sniffles*

45.  And remember when Uribe came back?  *sniffles again*

44.  I also liked riding my first roller coast (no, really.  It’s related.) because it drove home that this season was like a roller coaster.   Which is to say seriously headache inducing, but fun afterwards.

43.  I don’t know how this all worked, but I’ve been hearing Giants ads for the Not For Sale Campaign.  If they’ve partnered, then that is most certainly something I love.

42.  Jeremy’s rebound year.  Minus the frozen burger patties.

41.  That they didn’t do anything silly like start the season in Taiwan.

40.  That they rocked their doubleheader at Wrigley.

39.  Matt Cain ruled overall, as always.

38.  That they let themselves get swept by Milwaukee in May.  I’m sure they have a crystal ball and knew they wouldn’t get into the playoffs, but the Brewers could, so they gave them that series.  Very thoughtful, you know.

37.  When Pablo Sandoval decided to retweet people who said nice things about him making the All Star team and he retweeted me.  It made me a lot happier than it rationally should have.

36.  When Bruce Bochy got congratulated by Ryan Braun on winning the World Series (minute 1:40.  I know you want to see it.)  This is what I call icing on the cake, people.

35.  NATE.  One last time.  Sorry.

34-20. This is when Diamond Girl had to leave unexpectedly to sniffle in the closet for a bit at the realization that this is really the end of the 2011 season.

19.  Okay!  Back.   Let’s do a silver lining thing now: not winning the pennant means the target-on-back will lessen or disappear.  And these Giants do better when there are no Great Expectations.  Sorry, Charles Dickens.

18.  They also helped me and my new fish bond.  I am quite positive that the reason my fish seems to be liking me more is that we’ve endured the torture holed up in my room (yep, I said torture) together.

17.  That, by some luck, these players channeled enough thoughts about balking to Bob Davidson that he actually called a balk on that fateful June day.  And also gave me a great photo-editing opportunity.

16.  Emmanuel Burriss’s nickname-picky mother.

15.  That they did not take me up on my Hawaii Vacation/gold watches offers.  Which means they didn’t do that well, but it also means I won’t be in debt for the rest of my life.

14.  Totally random memory:  Pat Burrell and Eli Whiteside both hitting triples in one game.  Weird and great.

13.  The promotions their awesome TV network came up with.  Especially the Ultimate Tim Lincecum one.  (Which I, eh, won.)

12.  The players designing endearingly horrific t-shirts.

11.  That they drafted another good-name player in the draft.  That is Joe Panik.  If only for the name, it was a good pick.

10.  Walk-offs!

9.  And more walk-offs!

8.  And even more walk-offs!

7.   The power outage in St. Louis.  Now I really credit the Cardinals (read: Tony LaRussa) for that, but it was a Giants moment anyway.  And a darn memorable one, too.

6.  When Cainer demonstrated he actually does have the ability to dress well.

5.  All the opportunities they gave me to use my dearly beloved balloon-popping set of photos from Despicable Me.  Because seriously, I love those photos.  Even if it meant they broke my heart.

4.  Last thing about Chris Stewart!  I promise!  But I remember the first time I saw him do a throwdown to second.  And I think I thought it was cupcakes and brownies and cinnamon roasted almonds all mashed into one.  (And yet it was good.  All those foods mashed together probably, um, wouldn’t be.)

3.  Don’t let anyone fool you into thinking you shouldn’t let your kids watch baseball!  It’s educational!  I mean, this year I learned what “contusion” means.  Overandoverandoveragain.

2.  It was like a magical realism book (what is a magical realism book, you ask?  Read here and be enlightened.)  Stray bits of left over magic were everywhere.  And that’s even better than full-on magic, somehow.  (Although, yes, I like full-on magic when it means winning the World Series. But don’t interrupt my poetic-ness, please.)

1.  They gave me a lot to blog about.  A lot, a lot.  So I thank them for that.  And I thank you all for bearing with me and my weirdness and my love of strange foods and for reading and commenting here as well.  It’s been a brilliant, crazy year and more fun than I can possibly express.

Now, if you’ll excuse me… I need to go reminisce for a bit more and then find my antlers and morph into Ranger-Girl.  Bye-bye, 2011 season.

Diamond Girl

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In Which I Go All J-Sanch and Predict a Sweep

The photo puts me in a ridiculously good mood.  I am going to go all J-Sanch now and say we are so going to sweep Philly.

Whether that has more to do with the above photo, these brilliant little interviews with Jon Daniels (I wasn’t imagaining the Jed-Jon rivalry!) and Ryan Braun (it’s true!  They asked him to be on The Bachelor!) on MLB Intentional Talk or the Giants real-live baseball skills, you can decide for yourself.

But I certainly am confident.  And confidence is key.  Even Willy Wonka knows that.

And now that I’ve given you enough video links to keep you going until the livestream of batting practice at 4:45 (who came up with that?  Sorry, but it’s way past boring.) I’ll just leave you with one message: may the force be with you.  And Jeremy.  And the World Series trophy.

Diamond Girl

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Carlos the Giant (Yep, There’s a Photo!) and The Desperate Ballplayers Being Non-Desperate

The last of the pecan rolls are gone and I am sitting here sniffling about what may have been Carlos Beltran’s last game at home in a Mets uniform and trying to picture him in a Giants uni.

I was having a hard time, so…

This followed.

And after looking at my photo editing genius long and hard I came to two conclusions: 1) I am a photo editing genius (sorry, did I already say that?) and 2) I’m not totally sold on Carlos being a good fit for the Giants.  Even if we could, by some stretch of the imagination, get him for a few low level prospects.  Beltran is batting .290 with 15 homers.  He’s not brute strength.  But he’s a distant cousin, I think.  And I guess I just wonder how The Big Bat acquisition would actually influence the team.  Last year at the trade deadline there were similar discussions of getting something to bolster the offense in a big way, but we ended up with Javier Lopez and Ramon Ramirez and after the trade deadline, some fantastic waiver acquisitions.  I guess Carlos Beltran feels like the easy, obvious way out.  And though I’m a Giants fan, I do live in A’s territory, so maybe it’s some inbred Moneyball complex that makes me opposed to it.  Then again, assuming he goes over to a contender, that could make problems for San Francisco down the road.  If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em, right?  Either way, I do like Beltran and have 2006 playoff nostalgia, so if he comes, I think the team could run with it.  But I’m not sending Brian Sabean urgent texts about this just yet.

I also just got around to watching The Franchise and I think this episode was a big step down from the last one.  Not at all Desperate Ballplayers-ish.  Maybe they were hoping the Giants would have a trainwreck season and all this winning just isn’t suited for the cameras.  More specifically, I understand that Vogelsong is a good story, I really do, but I just think we’ve heard enough for a little while.  And of course this was the one where they put the bright lights on Brian Wilson, which left me drumming my fingers.  Even for Wilson, it wasn’t very innovative or new.

The good parts!

Ryan congratulating Bochy was sweet, if it felt a little staged.  But he really. needs. to. cut. the. hair.  Pronto.

Scenic shots of the Golden Gate Bridge.  This is show is definitely not targeted at San Fran’ers.

And then Barry’s totally amazing kitchen and chairs- they’re even orange!- and sunglasses.  The white pants?  Not so much.  I so want his aquarium, too.  I do, however, wonder about his whole being away from civilization thing.  I mean, this view hardly constitutes the wild.

So another week ending firmly in first place.  The Giants aren’t running away with the division exactly, but I always liked walking better anyway.  And they are most certainly walking away with it.

Diamond Girl

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