Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Angel in the Outfield, and Shortstop

D'y'all see this?  If you thought Gregor Blanco's catch in Matt's perfect game was good, check it out.  San Diego's one legit slugger, Carlos Quentin, at the plate.  Game tied, eighth inning, one out, runner on first.  Romo leaves what may have been an attempt at a slider over the fat part of the plate and Quentin hammers it towards the wall in right center.  Angel Pagan, running, stretching, falling to his right, grabs the ball, rolls part way to his feet and heaves the ball.  What you can't see very well on the replay is that Brandon Crawford, well into the outfield, catches the ball, turns and throws a rope to Brandon Belt at first.  Chase Hedley, who had already rounded second and was probably going to score if that ball had fallen, was out by a fraction of an inch.  Was Belt's added height at first enough to make the difference?  A double play to end the inning.

But the Pagan/Crawford magic didn't stop there.  Ninth inning, game still tied 2 all.  Giants had one hit (off Luke Gregerson) since their 2-run first inning.  Margaret Thatcher, tough old bird that she is, on the mound for San Diego.  Belt, showing patience and fouling off a couple of pitches, walked.  Angel, getting a much needed hit, singled.  Both runners moved up on a high and tight passed ball that whizzed over Yasmani Grandal's shoulder.  Crawford, who had shown bunt, then singled up the middle for the game winner.  He reportedly was not injured in the pile-up.

Madison Bumgarner looked fantastic to start the game, blanking the side with two strikeouts in the first.  Edison Volquez, meanwhile, made it look like another Giants romp in the bottom of the first.  Double, single, ground-out rbi, passed ball, ground out, double.  Giants up 2-0, but things changed quickly.  Madison gave up two doubles in the second, among three for the night.  By the bottom of the second, Madison had thrown 45 pitches and the game was tied.  Volquez, on the other hand, looked fantastic.  He pretty much made the Giants look meek for seven innings with an awe-inspiring curve-ball.  Madison, it seemed, did not have sharp command, and when he missed, he missed over the plate and didn't get away with it.  He had thrown 90 pitches by the end of the 5.  But, at the end of seven, Madison had given up only two runs, and you can't find much fault with that.  Both starters were gone after seven.

No, Madison did not get #12, but the Giants got a W while LA was puking their guts out in St. Louis.  As I pointed out earlier, this is the start of a run against the NL West.  We have again secured a series win in the first two games and again, are hunting for a sweep.  In any case, there is some great ball being played out there.

PS.  Anyone notice how good looking Angel Pagan is?  His teeth are so white!  Seriously, the guy looks like a movie star.  I don't know how Amy G. can keep her hands off him in the post-game interview.

PPS.  Nathan Eovaldi is now a Marl, Hanley Ramirez is a dogger.  Pablo seems to have hurt his hammie stretching for a ball at first.  Not on the DL yet, so it may warrant only a couple of days.


Zo said...

Oops. 5th sentence should read, "hammers towards the wall in right center."

Zo said...

Oh, and you have to love this line:
Carlos Quentin: 4 PA, 3 AB, 1 hit, 1 HBP, 4 outs.

M.C. O'Connor said...

That was a magnificent play: the catch, the recovery and throw to the cutoff man, BCraw grab-and-turn and perfect strike, Belt's stretch. Wow, as good as it gets. Kuip called it "the play of the year." And he was there for the Blanco and The Perfecto! The DP Panda got hurt on was also an amazing play. Just another boring 3-2 Padres game!

Hanley Ramirez is a coup for LA. He's not the player everyone thought he'd be, but he's 100% better than what they have at SS-3B. The Marlins got very little in return and also gave away Randy Choate in the deal. How does such a lopsided thing occur in a pennant race? Ridiculous.

Time for Tim to get the broom out!

Zo said...

Speaking of double plays, remember sitting in Section 30 and watching Jeffrey Leonard climb the fence to take away a home run and then throw out a runner at second?

M.C. O'Connor said...

That was an unforgettable play, to be sure, esp since we had such a good view and we were HacMan fans!

nomisnala said...

Even with their usual east coast bias, the MLB network, called that catch, among many good plays, the play of the day!