Tag Archives: ryan vogelsong

Why I Am Now Fabricating Giant-Related Disasters

It is now time to exhale and laugh a little at ourselves for the mass hysteria that has ruled the roost for the past few days.  Well, maybe not completely exhale just yet.  We are only one game removed from all of that, but what a game it was.  A 2-1 victory in Los Angles, dealing Clayton Kershaw his first at-home loss in over a year and playing respectable defense at last, too.  There was a bit of clutch hitting and a lot of good pitching.  Overall, very encouraging and very calming.  Leastways, I felt calmed.

We did not leave unscathed, of course, seeing as Pagan got some sort of a nasty cramp in the eighth, but that was just to be expected, right?  No pain, no gain, as my brother reports they preach in Little League.  (And you wonder why I didn’t play Little League, guys.  Positive mantras and I tend to, er, clash.)  Hopefully, this wasn’t that big a pain, though.  Bochy says Pagan will be back in a day or two and he was planning to give him a rest today, anyhow.

This feels weird to write, really.  There are no horrors to describe or disastrous turns to narrate.  I swear, I am this close to inventing a storyline about Ryan Vogelsong’s freak injury as he was combing his hair with a silver comb given to him by a suspicious-looking witch in a cottage in the middle of the forest.   The witch was probably jealous, you know, about his amazing good looks and pitching and stuff so she gave him aforementioned poisoned comb.

I mean, do you see the spike in the hair there?  I know it’s mostly gel, but a comb has got to involved somewhere too.

See?  Now I feel like a Giants blogger again.  It’s Disaster Inside and all that.

In all seriousness, though, I am stoked for tonight’s game.  I think this is going to continue going swimmingly (hopefullyhopefully) and soon I will become accustomed to It’s Magic Inside and all that.  In the purely non-Magic-Johnson sense of the phrase.

Diamond Girl

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At Turns Banged Up, Cuckoo and Terrible

Just as I was starting to think we might get through Spring Training with minimal disastrousness, everything started to, well, fall apart.  That’s what I get for trying to be optimistic.  The offense has started snoozing enthusiastically, the pitchers are pretty much looking at turns banged up (Vogey), cuckoo (Zito) and terrible (Zito again, plus a bunch of other starters and a few relievers).  There’s no such thing as a free pass, huh?  I am just trying to visualize this as the spring equivalent to the dog days of August and convincing myself that everything will be all ironed out by the Opening Day.

Cross your fingers with me, m’kay?

In other news, I have another example of the strange but undeniable fact that the Giants and I obviously mystically connected.  Case in point?  Just as they get all injured, I get a nasty fever and cold.  Seriously, people.  This is eerie.  I spent last night making pesto with badly ground basil, watching Annie Hall and then promptly sleeping for thirteen hours or so.  The fever has faded now.  The Giants might try that, you know, if all else fails, because I am totally feeling better now.  Who knows, some Woody Allen could do wonders for Brandon Belt’s sore hip!

The thing that’s really been on my mind lately, though, is the peculiar phenomenon of the Overperformer in Spring Training Who Makes Opening Day Roster Against All Odds.  John Bowker comes to mind, but there’s really one almost every year.  If I were not still groggy and sick, I would try to get some statistics on this front, because I am honestly extremely skeptical of these guys.  Really, how often do they end up succeeding?  Is there any good reason to believe that a little while longer in the minors would be terrible for them?  I’ve been thinking about this, of course, because of Hector Sanchez, who is, admittedly, tearing it up with the bat and the Giants need that badly.  But I think I am rooting against him playing in San Francisco on April 9th all the same.  If nothing else, it makes for a much better story for the papers/Tweeps if he comes up in May, a la Buster Posey.  And if something else, he might do a thousand times better.  Stewart and/or Whiteside can do a perfectly good job keeping the bench warm, while Sanchez gets ready.  This is what I vote for.

Diamond Girl 

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Playoff Expansion, First Spring Training Game, Conspiracy Theories and All That Good Stuff

Spring Training is one of my favorite times of year (well, spring, but spring is synonymous with Spring Training, right?) because of all the promise and optimism it brings, but also because of the endless news buzzing it creates.  After a long and quiet winter- if you’re a Giants fan, that is, because we’re rather sleepy in the winter like that- it’s endlessly lovely to hear real, concrete news.

I’m not talking about injury news, though, Dan Runzler, Tim Lincecum, Brian Wilson, Freddy Sanchez, Ryan Vogelsong et al., so don’t go getting any ideas.  I would choose a rainy, snoozy news day over a They Are Falling Like Flies day any time.

What I am talking about?  Playoff expansion, for one.  Bud Selig has gotten down to work, following his extra (baseball) life which he was granted over the offseason, and the extra wild card deal was finalized today.  I felt surprisingly ambiguous at the time of the announcement because, heck, it’s March 2nd and the Giants are playing their first Spring Training game tomorrow and the world is beautiful and the playoffs could not be farther from my mind, but as the day went on, my feelings changed.

Which, I am kind of guessing, was part of MLB’s plan.  Ready for my conspiracy theory?  Okay, here goes: MLB is doing this when everyone is out of their permanently touchy offseason modes and still basking in the glow of baseball being back, so as to soften possible backlash.  And it seems to have worked, actually.  Which, yes, could have to do with the fact that we were all expecting this by now or just that no one is genuinely outraged, but that is far of a less compelling thought.  I vote for my conspiracy theory, anyone with me?

Anywho.  The reason I’m not for those extra wild cards, I suppose, is both a pro and con of the whole thing.  I think it makes it all even more a crap shoot, to use a Billy Beane-ism.  People are saying it’s exciting because it makes the playoffs even more “everyone’s game”, which is true.  And I see the appeal of that.  I’m sure that extra wild card team will win the World Series from time to time and it will make for a fabulous story.  But with the 162 game format, I’m more of the opinion that we should shy away from that whole crapshoot thing.  Winning big in baseball is about perseverance and I like it that way.  I think this just changes the game.  For better or for worse?  Who knows.  Only time will tell.  (Other half of me:  Duh!  For worse!  But I’m trying to be all non-judgmental here, so just forget I said that.)

Onto lighter and brighter things, I am soamazinglystokedforthegametomorrow.  I will probably be missing the majority of it due to more umpire training, but I will hopefully be catching- in a purely non-Buster-Posey-ish sense- the beginning.  I’m not even sure what to say about that, except that I’m not even thinking about winning or losing or injuries just… baseball game.  Baseball game.  Say it aloud and grin to yourself.  Do it.

(Try reminding me of that whole “not about winning or losing” thing in September.  Actually, don’t.  I can be snappish, on occasion.  That sounds like an occasion.)

Diamond Girl

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Game of Thrones Bashing, Grammar Nazi-ing and MLB Fan Cave Hating

Big headlines these past few days:  the aces have back stiffness and beat writers take bad iPhone photos.  Which is to say, this Spring Training has been pretty eventful so far.  In bad ways (the former) and good ways (the latter).

At first, I felt pretty much the same way about Lincecum’s back stiffness as I did about Vogelsong’s: absolutely panicked.  But then I read Bruce Bochy said that this is really totally normal for Spring Training and nothing to be alarmed about and I had a big old epiphany and realized there was no need to start pulling my hair out.  Besides, if I start now, I’ll have none left for Opening Day, let alone the stretch run.  I have 18 inches of hair, but even 18 inches can be taken down with a whole lot of pulling.

As for the beat writers, the controversy is honestly a wee bit baffling to me.  I don’t want to link to the site directly because as a blogger, I know how I relish page hits but you can check out another article about how whole thing here.  Mostly, the TwitPics are bad.  I get that.  We all get that.  But I also don’t get the level of outrage it’s stirring up within the legions of fans.  Why do we need fab photos of Brian Wilson’s first bullpen sessions?  Can’t our imaginations do just as good a job?

Okay, maybe not.  But then if we do get a photo and it’s terrible and blurry, “grin and bear it” comes to mind.  Anyone who uses a digital camera vs. a phone camera knows the hassle associated with getting a photo from a digital camera onto Twitter.  Reality, is Twitter is built for mobile devices.

Aside from the quality, people are also getting up and arms about the subject matter.  Apparently people get sick of feel-good-nice-little-moments photos fast.  To which I have to say, shall we comb through your Twitter feed and find the time you live-tweeted Game of Thrones?  Or the time you tweeted photos of your breakfast every day for three weeks?   Or the time you retweeted the infamous pigeon twitter account saying “coo coo coo”?  Not judging here, you’re allowed to admit your weakness for George R.R. Martin and I will not comment despite my loathing of him.  My point is just that we’ve all done something along those lines.  If a beat writer is overzealous and nostalgic about Spring Training, “grin and bear it” comes to mind once more.

Just goes to show that if Timmy talked more about his In-N-Out we would all have less time on our hands to get preoccupied about things like this and the (baseball) world would be a much better place.  You listening, Freak/Franchise/Guy With Long Hair Who May Soon Have Short Hair?

Last but not least, I feel I should share my vote on the MLB Fan Cave so you all can go vote accordingly, of course.  I’m going to have to disappoint though and so my vote goes to (drum roll, please):  no one.  I really did try to put aside that I think the Cave ranks up there with Tom Cruise on Oprah as one of the worst publicity stunts of all time and go look for someone to vote for today, but I came up short.  Why?  My mellowing out plan went sour when some overwhelming percentage of the 50 finalists said, “I am someone that.”  At which point my grammar Nazi alarm bells went off in my head because people are not “that”s they are “who”s!  What are they teaching kids in schools… ten years ago when these hipsters were in them?

I ask you.

Diamond Girl

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The Whole Baseball-Injuries-That-Do-Not-Exist-In-The-Real-World Thing

They are falling like flies, people.

(Yes, I know flies to honey is a different cliché entirely.  But this little cartoon was just too good to pass up.  Bear with me.)

Okay.  Maybe that’s unfair.  One of them fell in an only slightly fly-like way.  But that is still reason for a bit of mass hysteria, if you ask me.  I mean, after last year, us Giants fans have a right to be paranoid about injuries.  If you have puzzled googly eyes because you are not as glued to Twitter as I am (understandable), then I will share the sensational news: Ryan Vogelsong announced today that he is out for 10 days with back stiffness.  AKA, he may never be able to use his back again.  Let’s just say my state of smiliness went up in a poof of blue smoke.

Because, sure, I am still massively excited about Spring Training and catchers and pitchers getting fab new tans and Buster Posey being Buster Posey and all of that, but injuries are just a massive buzzkill, aren’t they?

I know back stiffness is, on the scale of Baseball Injuries (That Do Not Exist In the Real World), not really that serious.  They can come back to haunt players later in the season, of course, but it’s not- gasp- the arm or anything like that.  And if Vogey is anything like Lincecum (think: All Star Game), maybe he’s just nervous and trying to avoid the spotlight of the beginning of Spring Training.  I told you that injuries breed paranoia.  I am entitled to a few conspiracy theories here.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to check that my back door is locked and look at a few more blurry photos of Barry’s new windup which is going to potentially bring World Peas and a cure to cancer!  Plus maybe good pitching.  Do you all understand the magnitude of this?

Diamond Girl

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