One and Done? 

At least Armando Benitez hasn't blown a save!

Seriously, ladies and gentiles, there's a lot of doomsaying around these parts. One win, five losses, Dodger fans shoving brooms in our faces. Even the Safeway clerk in King City remarked, upon seeing my Giants hat yesterday, that things weren't looking up. When a Salinas Valley resident, who depends upon agriculture and is staring at the worst drought in 20 years and major bad juju from global warming, tells you your favorite team is in for a nasty summer, you either tell him he's got bigger things to worry about, or you pick up your presliced cheese, shrug your shoulders and nod.

One win the first week. How often has a team that eventually finishes with a winning record gone through a week with only one win? Probably every team, every year. Perhaps more than once. It happens. It also happens to really, really bad teams, too, so softly singing "Everybody hurts...sometimes" at this point only makes me feel more kinship with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

There is a real and present danger here. If the panic button starts blinking manically, Brian Sabean may strike a short-term deal to shore up the offense and the bullpen, thereby mortgaging even farther into the future to patch a badly cracked foundation. From here on out, he trades from weakness. The smell is everywhere; even the condors at the Pinnacles are nudging each other and thinking "Road Trip to S.F., why the hell not?" (I was there yesterday but did not see any.) He will not con anyone (not that he has in recent years, anyway), he will not get any one player who can boost this team's fortunes.

Improvement must come from within, and there were some nice silver linings this past week:

* Noah Lowry, Matt Cain and Matt Morris had strong starts. Lowry was especially encouraging.
* Ray Durham looked 10 years younger on defense and hit .350 / .458 / .450 in his first stint as a clean-up hitter.
* In his "get to know you" interview spot on the Jumbotron, Barry Zito's hair is more foolish than his pitching. That's hard to do.
* No Giant has gone on the DL.
* Um...
* King City: A Passion for Lettuce!

A week from now, fresh off a crazy improbable sweep of the Rockies in Colorado, we'll all be backslapping and bellyscratching and wondering how we got so down in the mouth after that first-week aberration. Two, three, and four weeks from now you'll be seeing headlines from me such as "Ryan Klesko: Big Game Hunter" and "More Ortiz, Please!"

They're already trademarked; don't even think about it.


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