Essentially, this game was the platonic ideal of the San Francisco Giants vs. Tim Hudson. Giants hitters swung early, swung often, and swung at trailing sinkers that promptly meandered back out to the Braves infielders. I think at one point Jason Heyward pulled a lawn chair out to the field and had a mojito. Madison Bumgarner, meanwhile, was pretty excellent, giving up an unearned run thanks to a Pablo Sandoval error (on a tough play, it must be said) and two solo home runs. Home runs are a thing the Braves produce with regularity, as even pitchers of MadBum’s quality occasionally lay one out over the plate. It seems churlish to complain about the Giants’ lack of HR power the day after that circus last night, but heck, there’s a reason we all freaked out for the dinger parade. It doesn’t happen.
Anyway, Bumgarner was great in most ways but not great enough for an offense that once again flailed with runners in scoring position. The only rally that succeeded, early in the game, was capped off by a Manny Burriss RBI single, which should tell you a lot about this game. Melky Cabrera continued his wondrous trolling of the entire city of Atlanta, but it wasn’t enough. This was the game we were all expecting in Atlanta, and I should be grateful to take 2 out of 3 in the pit of unspeakable nightmares and uncomfortable butt-sweat weather that is Turner Field. I am, really. And there were entertaining things about that game, like Manny Burriss batting against Craig Kimbrel, which was the most “Baseball does what you think it will” plate appearance with Jamie Moyer vs. Giancarlo Stanton* with the bases juiced.
But there’s that other thing. You know what I’m talking about. I don’t really have to say it. The pinch-hitting thing. Yeah. That happened. Last night was a wonderful mushroom trip at the beach where the ocean spoke to us and told us the meaning of whale-song, and today was the brown acid at Woodstock. (Justin Christian’s one-pitch flyout was Jimi Hendrix’s afro growing legs and scuttling off, if you were wondering.)
Brandon Belt playing around his upside could be a huge help for the Giants’ power outage. Brandon Belt playing around his upside is a tremendously desirable commodity, and there’s a lot of teams who could use a fix at 1B for the next, what, five years? Watch this space for trade news. I have the night terrors, the kind where Jonathan Broxton in a Giants uniform isn’t even the worst option.
What a stupid game. Hurry up, trade deadline, I can’t take much more of this.
*That was the one where Stanton broke his own stadium.