Baseball can be a spectacularly unfair game, but Sunday night's contest wasn't. When your defensive replacements make errors, you lose the game. When you make a strategic decision to load the bases to pitch to a struggling batter -- and he caroms one off the wall -- you lose the game. And, most of all, when you manage only one measly run, and no sustained offense whatsoever, you lose the game.
So, the Giants lost the game.
Knotted up at one apiece in the National League Championship Series, the Giants' mindset is probably akin to yours after walking away from all too many challenging exams: Better than you'd thought, worse than you hoped. Getting a split in Philadelphia was crucial and anything more would have been spectacular. But more was there to take, and the Giants did not.
Heading back to San Francisco for a Tuesday afternoon contest -- seriously, how am I supposed to get anything done at work? -- the Giants will have a few questions to ponder:
- Since Mike Fontenot made an error on Sunday and allowed a popup to drop in front of him that would have embarrassed the Bad News Bears, does the logic of keeping him in the lineup for his defense run afoul of reality? Does Pablo Sandoval get his job back?
(An aside: Could Fontenot
look a little bit more like Spike Jonze's character
in Three Kings
? Also, it'd be a lot easier to approve of whatever he's letting grow on his face if he'd play just a bit better.)
- Has Sandoval been spending his time on the bench eating ballpark food? When he came up to bat last night, he looked like someone ought to break a bottle of champagne over him and christen him the S.S. Pablo. I was worried his girth would cause the television at the bar I was attending to become dislodged from the wall.
- Is it time to get Sergio Romo out of the doghouse and let him pitch meaningful innings again?
- If Cody Ross keeps up this amazing performance, can we run him for mayor next year? What's his position on sit-lie?
Finally, the Giants are a team that appears much better suited to the pitcher-friendly confines of AT&T Park
. The opposite-field home runs, the badly hit balls carrying to the track -- that won't happen here. There'll be no cheapies in San Francisco. Come what may.
Follow us on Twitter at @TheSnitchSF