The Ship Be Sinking

Mouth Almighty

We’re not tortured

For only the second time I can remember, I have been compelled to send an e-mail to the Sports Guy in reference to one of his columns. I don’t remember what the first one was (and it wasn’t printed, so I’d have no reason to recall it), but this most recent occurrence was regarding his piece on tortured franchises that went up today. He put the San Francisco Giants at No. 6, and stated that we may be the most underrated tortured franchise out there. This is what I wrote to him in response:

Sports Guy:

As a Giants fan, I can’t agree with our status at #6 of your list of tortured franchises. With just about all of them, either their consistency of losing is too crushing for words, or they’ve had a series of events in big games that are just…well…just unfair.

The Giants can’t make that claim. They’ve been consisently mediocre for much of the SF-based history, so the constant losing bit is out. As for unfair, whose fault is it that in Game 7 of the 2002 Series, we sent out a guy with a 12-16 record to try and win the game?

Whose fault is it that currently, one of the best staffs in baseball has to depend on a constant parade of injury-prone, over-expensive hackers who can’t hit for power and can’t play defense?

We’re not tortured, we’re badly mismanaged. If you want to talk underrated, Brian Sabean is quietly one of the worst general managers in sports. It’s nor torture if we have it coming.

It’s the same stuff that John Perricone over at the always-excellent Only Baseball Matters harps on about all the time. Dave Roberts. Ray Durham. J.T. Snow. Randy Winn. Edgar Renteria. Freddy Sanchez. Joe Nathan for Double Play A.J. It goes on and on and on, and I think it would be churlish to whine about our lot when our recent playoff history basically amounts to this:

1987: Lost the NLCS 4-3 to a St. Louis team that went 95-67. The only thing you need to know about Game 7 here is that St. Louis sent 11-9 Danny Cox to the hill, and he was clearly the better pitcher. Atlee Hammaker was 10-10 that season, walked 57 opposed to 101 Ks, and had an ERA+ of 92. Spectacular. Then again, the rotation was in such a state that season that the third-winningest pitcher on the staff (with an 11-7 record) was the fucking CLOSER, Scott Garrelts.  In short: we had this one coming.

1989: Skated through the NLCS 4-1 thanks to noted horror villain Calvin Schiraldi (instead of killing teenagers, he murdered the dreams of actual tortured franchises instead). Got obliterated 4-0 in the World Series by the 99-63 Athletics, who were frankly so much better than us the margin of victory did not flatter them. Sure, the earthquake meant that Dave Stewart and Mike Moore got to pitch twice each, but they had Bob Welch (17-8) and Storm Davis (19-8) waiting in the wings. They had such an embarrassment of riches that even at a young and optimistic age, I knew we had no shot right from the off.

1997: Out in the wild card 3-0 to the eventual champion Florida Marlins. Fire sale or not, they were better than us and deserved to go through.

2000: Out in the wild card 3-1 to the World Series finalist New York Mets (94-68). Again, they were better than us in every facet and deserved to go through.

2002: Already covered. The starting rotation sucked and we got to the World Series on the strength of Bonds and Bonds alone. Next.

2003: Out in the wild card 3-1, again to Florida. Again, they were better. End of.

Tell me again how we’re tortured?

 

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January 29, 2010 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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