Ain't No Sunshine Without Ray

I just got back from the yard, where the Giants' bats slept soundly against the mighty Wes Obermueller. Obermuller actually hit better than any of the Giants' starters--he cracked a single up the middle against David Aardsma and drove a ball to the center field warning track where Grissom caught it.

It was a taste of life without Bonds and Durham. Feliz hitting fourth. Neifi leading off. Alfonzo also had the day off until he pinch hit in the 7th. Bonds had just pinch hit before him but was intentionally walked to load the bases. Fonzie hit for Ransom and represented the tying run. First pitch (after the new pitcher had thrown four wide ones, no less), Fonzie swings and pops feebly to short center against some doof who wears the bill of his cap flat and hits himself in the head with the resin bag to get psyched up to pitch.

Everyone took terrible swings. Tucker and Pierzynski looked especially bad. Are we sure A.J. hit .300 with gap power the past two years? Is there another Pierzynski we didn't know about? Other than a few shallow singles, I haven't seen him hit the ball hard all year. Same with Alfonzo, who's re-enacting the start he had last year, in case any of you missed it.

The good news: even with half their starting lineup hitting with wiffle ball bats, they're over .500. Even as Neifi quickly regresses to the mean, we can expect Snow, Fonzie, Pierzynski to hit somewhat better and Tucker to hit at least a little better. Gulp. Can't we?

Kudos to Brian Cooper, who had one bad inning and five excellent ones in his start today. He's a little guy, and with his "37" and sinker-slider repertoire reminded me of Kelly Downs. Cooper replaced Torcato on the roster. There's talk of Durham going on the DL, which would be a huge bummer. Both Aardsma and Franklin looked shaky today. Either could be a candidate for the boot. We'll probably find out when Schmidt comes back Friday.

Final thought: I hadn't seen Aardsma pitch until now. I don't want to jinx the guy, but he's the herkiest, jerkiest, slingin'est pitcher I've seen since El Duque Hernandez. It makes my joints hurt just to watch him. I wonder if the Giants are worried about injuries with him...

Really final thought: U.S.S. Mariner has an interesting take on the M's really bad start. It's all about the defense. According to their calculations, a lot more balls in play are falling in. I haven't run the Giants' numbers and would be overjoyed if someone else wanted to, but it makes me suspect that, despite having several regulars hitting with badminton rackets and a baling-wire-and-glue pitching staff, the Giants are above sea level because of their defense.


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