Before I get into the subject today, I'd like to be clear that I did not visually see one second of the Cubs/Giants game last night. I did, however, listen from the 8th inning until the end of the game on my way back from Tahoe City (I played a private gig up there, and it was a lot of fun!)
While driving back, the Cubs are down 2-1 and it's obvious that Brad Penny was absolutely shutting them down. It's amazing that a team with an anemic offense like the Giants only needs to play the Cubs to find a team with a worse offense. After the Cubs got out in the 8th inning, I received a text message from commenter Clarkster's brother. It said simply, "Go Giants."
As far as shit talking goes, this was quite mild, and I think he was more saying, "Hey man, I'm watching the game, looks like the Giants will gain a game on the Rockies." At the time though, it stoked the fires of competition within my belly, and I decided to really let my inner fan out for the 9th inning.
I did not text him back immediately because I figured a) we'll see how this plays out, and b) I'm driving on a desolate highway that could turn me off into the movie "House of 1,000 Corpses" any minute. I continued to listen to John Miller's call of the game (Bay Area AM radio near Tahoe City? Great reception!)
The Giants were retired in order by Aaron Heilman in the 8th, and then my fantasy team closer Brian Wilson came in to close the game out (I was wrong yesterday, I'm playing for $40 and 3rd place currently.) He walked Derrek Lee and my first thought was, "Nothing good ever comes from a lead off walk..."
The next two guys pop out, so that leaves the final at bat to former Colorado Rockie Jeff Baker. Uh-oh...
John Miller threw out the stat- "Jeff Baker is 0-3 with three strikeouts against Wilson, so he's never even put the ball in play against him." There's a radio jinx if I've ever heard one.
Wilson gets ahead in the count 0-2, then misses with two sliders. He must have gotten impatient because his next pitch was a fastball that was properly struck. Baker immediately turned his career numbers against Wilson into a respectable 1-4 with a homerun. Cubs up 3-2, and his ex-teammates are probably contemplating buying him a new car.
You could hear the Giants fans booing through the radio. This time, I couldn't help myself. With no pressure on the Cubs, I needed to risk driving into a bank of trees to text back, "Go Cubs!"
There was nothing coming back my way until several minutes later. The buzz of the phone went off and all it said was "God dammit." Well said.
Carlos Marmol came in and was clearly thinking about blowing the save, but in the end, he retired the side and the Cubs won. This effectively eliminated the Giants from the playoffs- but wait, maybe I shouldn't speak to soon... If we've learned anything from this story, it's that it ain't over 'til it's over, right?
I hope everyone has a great weekend. I'll be at the Giants/Cubs game on Sunday, so I'll be back with a full report on Monday.