The Giants had a terrific series against the Braves, taking three out of four in San Francisco, including a come-from-behind win courtesy of Lance Niekro’s game-tying home run and Randy Winn’s bloop single in the bottom of the ninth. It therefore should go without saying that the game I attended was the one they lost.
That would be Friday, April 7. Not only did the Giants lose, they lost ugly. Matt Cain started out looking fairly sharp and nasty, but he was through by the fourth—unfortunate, given that he stayed in quite a bit longer. The bullpen then went out there and gagged, by the end of which a 6-4 Giants lead was turned into a 14-6 Giants loss. Tyler Walker lived up to his surname, walking thousands and thousands of batters before Jack Taschner came in and did the same (though, to be fair, Taschner also hit a guy on the foot). Jeremy Accardo then poured a little more gas on the fire before putting it out by peeing on it. Or something. I mean, these guys looked genuinely awful. Awful. Awful.
The only thing worse was the weather. I had called KNBR that afternoon to see if the game would be played. They said it would, primarily because the Giants wanted to get as many butts in the seats as possible, preferably butts purchasing hotdogs and beer.
My son, who had been looking forward to the trip to the Giants’ home, whatever it’s called these days, was beside himself at the thought that the game might be canceled. See, he likes the idea of going to baseball games, eating ballpark food, getting souvenirs, and exploring all the cool stuff at the yard. He likes it a hell of a lot more than he likes actually watching baseball, however.
The train dropped us off much earlier than I had anticipated, given the weather and all, so we strolled around for a while, ultimately ending up by the archways in order to avoid the rain. There we saw many shiny puddles in the outfield, plus a mostly flooded warning track, which led me to inform my son that he could kiss goodbye the notion of seeing Barry Bonds that night. Indeed, the only glimpse we got of the man was when he grabbed a bat just before Moises Alou’s pinch-hit, two-run homer that gave the Giants the lead. Clearly he would’ve hit if the game had stayed close, but thanks to the pen, Bonds sat all night. Bleah.
We attended the game courtesy of a cousin I had not seen since my age was somewhere in single digits. I shall not name him, lest you track him down and make fun of him for being related to me, but he and his wife are not only a delightful couple, they’re also huge Giants fans with season tickets, of which they sometimes have spares, hence our trip to The City.
Of course, the ballpark adventure was nothing compared to the adventure my son and I undertook upon exiting the home-bound train after foolishly listening to the conductor tell us to “detrain” because of a car on the tracks. Little did we know that this was the last train of the night—well, early morning. So there we were in San Mateo at 2 a.m., walking down El Camino, hoping for a lift before we actually walked all the way home and died from the effort. But that’s another story, as is the one about the drunk on the train who apparently wanted to fight me for a seat.