As I took in this sporting contest, I found myself confronting a slowly creeping sense of dread, similar to the mood built during the third act of a penny-dreadful or “thriller” moving picture. This is a sensation familiar to anyone who has experienced what the denizens of Denver mockingly refer to as Base-Ball, which looks deceptively like the game enjoyed by the rest of this great nation but contains explosions of run-scoring offensive to true Base-Ball Enthusiasts. At any time, otherwise innocent pitches can find their trajectory suddenly reversed and heightened, transformed into the abominable “Home Run.” Truly, what horrors hath science wrought?
Even the Giants, those honest practitioners of family-style Base-Ball, found themselves caught up in this newfangled nonsense. Fresh-faced, honest country boy Buster Posey, seduced by the allure of “going deep,” delivered a brutally mammoth swing on the very first pitch of the game and succeeded in a two-run “dinger” – but at what cost to his hard-earned reputation and the integrity of the game? Melky Cabrera and Angel Pagan followed suit, Pagan in particular relying on the bizarre contours and rarefied, perhaps scientifically engineered atmosphere of the diabolical Coors Field to turn an honest fly ball into a “solo jack.” It was a shameful display, truly.
Yeah, so maybe I forgot what home runs were and did a bad imitation of a 1920s sportswriter. Can you blame me? It’s been weird around here, weird and sluggish and depressing. You wouldn’t think that going to Coors Field (which really is a diabolical place) would be a cure to such ails, but as it turns out, the Rockies’ pitching staff is such a hot mess that even a slumping, hyper-aggressive lineup powered entirely by Busterium and Melkorous can succeed. And for a second day in a row, succeed they did, with just about everyone in the lineup contributing in some sense or another. Melky took four walks. Buster Posey continued to support the hypothesis that his “hot streak” is actually just his true talent level. Madison Bumgarner went 6 innings and gave up one run on a solo dinger, which is like 12 perfect innings in a real ballpark.
In one sense, playing the Rockies as they are right now is almost a lose-lose proposition. If you win, big deal, it’s the 2012 Rockies. If you lose, crikes, you lost to the Rockies? But this is baseball, where Eli Whiteside can hit a grand slam off Roy Halladay. Victory is not to be taken for granted. That Coors Field Fear I was talking about earlier sort of helps, in that sense; even with a 10-3 lead and Sergio Romo on the mound in the 8th, you can’t feel safe. You have to earn your wins at Coors. Or just, you know, hack at everything because some of them are gonna find a jet stream or an invisible dinger fairy or whatever they use.
Fricking Coors. Fricking Rockies. A potential 100-loss team should not scare me this much. Let’s sweep.