Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Almost makes no sense

Almost is a frustrating word.

Think about it. It's made up of "all" and "most", which, last I checked, aren't the same thing.

With winning it's even worse. You either have all of the win, or you have nothing. Sure, we say things like, "they almost won" all the time, but it's a bit goofy. They almost won, but they lost instead.Think about it -- winning and losing are two extremes, very far away from each other. You can eat most of an orange, but you can't have most of a win.

But geez, the Giants almost swept the Mets, if it weren't for the fact that they lost two of three in the series.

The Giants, as usual, specialize in the excruciating loss. Tuesday it was the blown call at 1st base followed by the Cliff Floyd home run, and Wednesday it was the ecstasy of watching Barry Bonds come through in the clutch with a game-tying, 9th inning home run off of molten-lava-thrower Billy Wagner, then watch that effort go to waste in extra innings.

People are going to start looking at me funny on B.A.R.T., walking around with as many daggers in my heart as I have.

Good Samaritan: "Sir, I don't mean to bother you while you're rocking out to Tool, but I can't help but notice that you seem to have several knives in the region of your ventricles."

Pierced Individual: "...actually, I'm listening to A Perfect Circle -- you do know that lead singer Maynard fronts for two bands, right? And they're daggers, not knives."

Good Samaritan (slightly confused): "...well, yes, I stand corrected about the...daggers,, which progressive rock band you're listening to. But, the...daggers...isn't that a bit...uncomfortable?"

Pierced Individual (nonplussed): "It's fine. I took some Visine earlier this morning, and I've got an Ace bandage around my ankle."

Good Samaritan (moderately confused): "...are you certain that's sufficient? I think I should notify the train operator."

Pierced Individual (me, in case you didn't recognize my subtle pseudonym): "It's really not a big deal. Why don't you mind your own affairs? I don't appreciate all this hullabaloo, you bastard!"

Good Samaritan (confused as all heck, but now quite irritated): "'re bleeding on my newspaper."

Pierced Indiv...Me: "...perhaps you should read your newspaper elsewhere."

Good Samaritan: "You're sitting on my lap."

Me: "Whaddya know? It's my stop."

I have the feeling the NL West is going to be a big clusterf--k all season long. All five teams, in a race to achieve the very best of mediocrity possible (I've determined that to be a .524 winning percentage, which is exactly the Giants winning percentage right now).

One thing truly bothered me about this game, though -- the selection of relievers by Father Alou. He doesn't seem to mind throwing the same guys into the fire night after night whether they're slumping or not -- in a game that saw Alou use five relievers, where was Brian Wilson, he of the impressive outing in the first game of the series? It would not only have been riding the hot hand, but it would also have been not riding the cold hand(s) of the rest of the bullpen.

Jeff Fassero's been struggling, as has Tim Worrell and Armando Benitez. Scott Munter has avoided being horrible, but has inspired confidence in very few of his outings thus far. Steve Kline's been decent, but...five relievers, four of whom have ben struggling to some degree. Both Jeremy Accardo and Wilson had great outings in their last appearances, yet they didn't get into the game.

It isn't a huge deal in any individual game, but it's a pattern of not trusting the young guys in favor of the veterans, regardless of how the veterans have been performing. In this case, it was kind of dumb, and it ended up in a line for the bullpen that reads like this: 5.1 innings pitched, 9 hits, 5 runs allowed, 4 walks, 3 strikeouts.

The two guys with the best arms in the bullpen also happen to be the youngest. While experience plays a large role in determining how well a pitcher does, sometimes talent just kicks experience's ass. I hope it doesn't take too long before Felipe tests that little theory out.


Anonymous said...

Brian Wilson is on the DL

Daniel said...

Jeez. Who comes up, pitches a great game, then goes right on the DL?

Thanks, though. Missed that.