I often complain that the Giants are lucky. I know that sounds funny, but what I mean is that the team's wins are too luck-dependent. The Giants play a lot of close games and do well in them, but over the long haul those things even out for most teams. Even some great teams are only "meh" in one-run games. Last night the normally-stalwart 'pen almost blew a three-run lead. Four runs is a lot for this club--they average a mere 3.51 rpg. The Giants got lucky in that the ball Brennan Boesch hit that ended the game could have hit the bat a few millimeters from where it did and perhaps traveled a few centimeters from where it did and suddenly it's not in the glove but trickling into the outfield. Such things decide games. I don't know if the Giants are just good at making that happen or what, but I fear the team's three-legged stool of pitching, fielding, and hitting is just too wobbly for comfort. But I'm a Giants fan, as I explained. Colossal failure right at the brink of success is more my style, it's what I'm used to. This defending champions thing is cool, but it's like having new jeans that haven't been broken in and are stiff and uncomfortable. I strut my World Series swag all the damn time, it's not that I'm not enjoying myself. It's just hard to feel secure when the team plays every game on a tightrope. Here's an old baseball man's take on the end of the game (Jim Leyland, from the Chris Haft story, emphasis mine):
"For us, it was hit in exactly the wrong spot, and for them it was hit in exactly the right spot," Leyland said. "That's a tough one. You don't have to be very far off [the base]. I mean, you're trying to score. There's nothing you can do about it. Just a freaky play."The Giants were 17-11 in June (their best month) and are tied for the fourth-most wins in all of baseball. It was the only month in which they met my RS > RA requirement (albeit a miniscule +7). We are past the halfway point and nearly to my mom's dividing line of the season--the Fourth. Mom always told me that if a team was "in first place on the Fourth of July" then they should finish the season in first place. OK, I'll go along with that.