Thursday, November 4, 2010

Epic Win

After their Halloween game, the San Francisco Giants were up 3-1 in the World Series. Game 5 was on Monday. It was a rematch between Tim Lincecum and Cliff Lee...the two aces (although I'd argue the Giants have more than one). You can bet that our family watched or heard ever single minute of it.

It ended up being just what the pundits said the first game was going to be...a killer pitcher's duel. And it lasted into the seventh inning...which was not all that long really. When two pitchers throw that many strikes, the innings just fly by. Not a single batter made it past first base. And then? Then Buster Posey hit a single, Cody Ross hit a single and Aubrey Huff, the Giants' red-rally-thong-wearing first baseman, bunted for the first time in his major league career. He was out, but Posey and Ross were on second and third. Pat "the bat" Burrell struck out, just like mighty Casey. And finally, Edgar Renteria came to the plate. He's one of the elder statesman of the Giants. His biceps muscle is completely torn, such that it has actually rolled down inside his arm. In his rookie season with the Florida Marlins, he drove in the game winning run in game 7 of the World Series. He was rumored to be talking about retirement. He took a couple of balls from Cliff Lee and swung at the third. It looked so much like a fly ball. And the outfielders ran back and back until the ball slipped over the wall in the left center field.

Three runs. Any Giants fan knows that's all Tim Lincecum needs. He gave up a solo home run to Nelson Cruz in the bottom of the inning, but blew through the 8th and despite looking like he could finish it out, he gave it up to The Beard, who made his job look easy...not something he's known for.

And it was over. I took no pictures, but there was plenty of jumping around in our family room. And a happy, happy little boy went to sleep that night.

I'm having a hard time detoxing from my overexposure to Giants baseball. Hundreds of thousands of people showed up in downtown San Francisco yesterday to welcome their team back home with a "ticker tape" (aka confetti) parade. I was not among them. I wanted to be badly. But I just couldn't convince myself that it was reason enough to pull Smunch out of school seemed like the wrong message to send. And I couldn't fathom going without my little baseball buddy. I watched on TV, tears streaming down my face more often that not. And yes, I realize how silly that sounds. It just got to the point this year that I felt like I kinda knew these guys just a little bit. And this is what they live for. In many ways, it's a silly, shallow thing that they do...going out there and hitting a ball with a stick. But great sports teams have a way of galvanizing people. And it's so much nicer to have that kind of connection with someone than connecting through some kind of disaster.

It's been a fantastic baseball season. I'm going to be so sad to see some of the players leave before next always happens. But the older I get, the more I understand how nothing lasts forever. All I can say is that I'm glad I was there to see these guys play while they were here.

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