Although I have taken another mistress in the Phillies, the Giants were my old fling flame. As you know, I am married to the Red Sox. So I cheat every now and again. Let’s be honest here. I love baseball and sometimes the boundaries are blurry. The other night when the mutant closer, Brian Wilson, was warming up and the microphones for tv picked up the bullpen, the delicious smack of the catcher’s glove sang through the air. I love that sound in Autumn.
My heart sank and my stomach felt wretched as I watched Ryan Howard get stuck and stung by a slider he had seen earlier in the at-bat. It was great pitch but also one he has hit before and hit long. I thought, that’s it, no more baseball for me. As Lucinda Williams sings, “I know it’s over, but I can’t let go.” Let’s go Giants.
The laboring days of this last(and lost) weekend of summer have a darkness about them. Leave it to a team with black uniforms to bring out desperation in Beantown. Fans and their early exits from games have been somewhat the norm this year. A few times this season, thousands of fans missed great comebacks. A few times. Yesterday, as reported in the Globe, fans looked as though they were being “chased” out of the park. In some ways, we already knew the Sox have chased themselves out of the postseason, through bad luck and broken bones and sometimes confounding one-run losses.
As some teams begin to see magic numbers appear on the road in front of them, some painful figures have been rung up recently. Baseball Prospectus gives the Sox less than a 5% chance of making the postseason. Other wounds from this weekend include the number of years–34-since the Sox were swept at home for a double-header. This was even before Bucky Dent had a middle name in Boston. The last time the White Sox swept our Sox at Fenway? Ten years ago. Ouch.
My magic number is THREE. There are three games to play, starting tonight against the Rays. A sweep(allow me to dream) would revive the otherwise dim lights in Boston. Three. A number with a long legacy, in literature and religious traditions. “3.” I keep repeating to myself today.
right of the pesky pole notes:
After a vacation in California, including one game at beautiful AT&T Park, where I helped my 7-year old nephew root for his Giants, university life begins again tomorrow.