Monday, October 01, 2007


One-game playoff between the Rockies and the Padres for a spot in the playoffs. I can't stand the Rockies ... partly because they have risen above their lot in life as permanent basement dwellers in a year when the sainted Giants are, well, basement dwellers .... and partly because they are the one team in baseball that has more or less openly embraced the notion of sports as Christianity in action ... I kid you not. I like the Padres because I spent two short vacations in San Diego and had a fine time. I'd hate both of 'em if the Giants were in contention.

Anyway, just back from dinner in the other room, tied 6-6 in the bottom of the 11th. Baseball, sweet baseball.

I contrived yesterday to get home from a day of running around reading in odd places and doing the week's designated shopping in time to catch the closeout from Kruk and Kuip, the Giants' great announcers. Horrible season notwithstanding the Bonds drama. I'll probably remember it more for watching the sublime sunset of Omar Vizquel and the sweet sunrise of young Tim Lincecum. The joy of baseball is not only in the winning, because winning for any given team, in an ultimate sense, is very rare. I know that Yankees' fans believe that they are entitled to it, and that is what gives everyone else such gurgling pleasure when the Yankees fail. I can only hope that their skulking into the playoffs by the wild card route is a prelude to a collapse that will make them once again beat their breasts and prance around like captive and gelded lions.

But notwithstanding the joys of watching the game, a year of a storied team stinking it up as the Giants have done is just about enough. I have written in support of Bonds, but here is an article that takes a darker view. Sorry to be a wimp, but I agree with it even without retracting my own sunnier pose here or here or here or here. I want a team next year that runs and plays with emotion. This can be a tired town, effervescent only insofar as it bubbles over in sloppy praise for itself. I think that Giants management has tended to make teams that play to that dynamic. Let's go the other way. Let's pretend we are youthful as we were in the several storied epics of San Francisco history ... the 49ers, the post-war era, the beat, the hippies, the gay revolution. Nothing going on here now but high-fructose-corn-syrup-slurping midwesterners in Chinese-made clothing crowding around Fisherman's Wharf imagining that they are bathing in a history that is, in point of fact, alien to everything they have been led to believe that they ought to believe in. Nothing going on here except self-absorbed should-be 'burbanites spending vast wads of filthy lucre that they do not really own on real estate that will shortly bankrupt them ... and ruining a great city in the process.

Let's at least have a baseball team. Let's at least have a baseball team that is better than those prayerful teetotalling poseurs from Denver. Lets's at least have a baseball team that does better than the Dodgers.

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