The wins just keep coming! The boys are still doing fine with key players out of the picture. As Kruk mentioned on KNBR this morning, you hope in that position that they can maintain at .500, but you never expect something like this. They can’t seem to get a win for Madison though (lost his last two even though he pitched beautifully), but hopefully that is just a fluke. At this moment, they are tied with Texas for the most wins in all of baseball, and they’re 7 ½ games ahead of the Dodgers. Who would believe they could do this with Pence, Cain, Romo, and Duffy out? I was at the game yesterday, and I felt like it ended so perfectly for this winning streak that they’ve had. Tied in the ninth inning, Ramiro Peña hits a double, then Conor Gillaspie brings him in with a walkoff double to win the game. So much contribution from the substitutes. And of course, the regulars are strutting their stuff as well, especially Angel, the Brandons, and Joe Panik. Beautiful. Happy time to be a Giants fan.
I went to the game yesterday with my brothers and my niece. So much fun. Torture, but fun. Every time we got a lead, the Phillies would match it. But we won out in the end. And it’s always a fun experience being with my family, eating pizza, seeds, and licorice, and enjoying the play of my boys. During the game, the Phillies pitcher hit three of our guys. Then my boy Johnny Cueto hit one of their guys. In a post game interview, Johnny said it was an accident, but my no-longer-naïve baseball self knows that it was done on purpose to show that Cueto cares about his teammates, an act that I still find pretty silly. You don’t need to hurt someone on the other team to support your own guys. And obviously the other guy didn’t do it on purpose because one time he hit a guy with the bases loaded. Mike Krukow agreed that Cueto probably did this on purpose and didn’t see anything wrong with it. Guess pitchers have to stick together. But it also brought up another interesting issue. Both Cueto and Krukow mentioned that after Cueto hit the guy, the strike zone magically shrunk for him. Pitches that had been strikes earlier in the game were now being called balls. It’s like the umpire was teaching Cueto a lesson. And that could explain why Cueto’s game was off after that. I would imagine that would really mess with your head. All this could be resolved if they used technology to call strikes and balls (I’m going to keep harping on this until they do it!).
During the game, I was chatting with a kid sitting next to me about baseball. I love chatting people up about my love of the game when I’m enjoying one at the park. After the Phillies pitcher had hit his third batter, he asked me if there was a limit to guys you can hit before you are ejected from a game. Good question, Kid! I didn’t know the answer, so I asked my brother, Nick. He said that there was no limit – that it was based on if, in the umpire’s opinion, there was intent to hit the batter or not. That’s why the Phillies pitcher could do it three times and not get a warning, but Johnny got a warning after one time – the umpire assumed Johnny did it in retaliation. I guess you would hope a guy would be pulled from the game before he hit too many guys as each time he’s giving up a walk. I decided to pursue this further, and did some research on what the record is for the most batters hit by a pitch in a game. The record for a single game is a tie at 6 between Ed Knouff (April 25th, 1887) and John Grimes (July 31st, 1897). The record for a single inning is 3, and there are too many players who have achieved this to list. Plus several of those guys did it in consecutive order! Kind of crazy. I’d be freaking out if I was next at bat! At least that record shows you that they would probably be pulled from the game before the number gets too high.
While doing this research, I came across an interesting article that discusses how intentionally throwing a ball at a player is a crazy idea. You can check it out here. Be sure to click on the links to some incidents that started feuds leading to hit batters. So much silliness! I pretty much agree with what the article is saying. If you think about it, it is equivalent to a felony. And the penalty is not very severe. What are your thoughts?
If you missed Gillaspie’s walkoff on Sunday, here you go. And if you did catch it, who doesn’t love to relive a walkoff? My favorite part of this video – Kuip mentioning that Bochy calls Gillaspie “Mr. Happy”. I’m dying! The most ironic nickname ever! I love Conor, but he’s always so serious!
More fun times with my boys: Did you see the end of the game on Friday night? You know how the outfielders always meet and jump up and chest bump each other? Well, at the end of that game the outfielders were Angel, Denard, and Gregor. And Angel and Gregor had a few tricks up their sleeve. They planned ahead of time not to jump, and Denard ended up jumping by himself! Too funny! Apparently Denard already has plans for revenge. Love this stuff! I tried to find the video to share with you to no avail. I’ll keep looking.
I guess Timmy’s luck at the plate was short-lived. He got lit up by the A’s in his second meeting with them last week, giving up 4 runs and lasting only 3 innings. Sigh. Will be keeping an eye on him. Hope he can do much better than that next time.
The Giants start a 4-game series against the A’s tonight – 2 games in San Francisco and then 2 in Oakland. I’m going to the game tomorrow night with my brother, Nick. We were able to get $10 View Level tickets from the mom of the kid I spoke with at the game yesterday (they won them and couldn’t go – SCORE!). I’m hoping my boys can continue with their winning ways as the A’s stink right now. Come on, Boys! Keep it up! GO GIANTS! BEAT THE ATHLETICS!