Zeus most glorious and most great, Thundercloud, throned in the heavens! Let not the sun go down and the darkness come, until I cast down headlong the citadel of Priam in flames, and burn his gates with blazing fire, and tear to rags the shirt upon Hectors breast! May many of his men fall about him prone in the dust and bite the earth! (Homer!)
It couldn’t be, could it? Deja Vu. The same river, twice. We had learned our lesson the day before, vowed to do better for the home fans. It was eerie how it formed the same pattern – a first inning run as per Ozzie and then a slow descent into the pitching underworld in the second innings that went on all evening till it totaled eleven runs from eighteen hits.
With hindsight, it was not and never had been a contest, rather perhaps an exhibition by the injury ridden Giants on how to play this game in all its aspects.First off they outpitched us comprehensively. Bloch showing great control, a fine change up, locating most everything down low.McCarthy, who came in with a scary record of having given up 42 runs in 37 innings against these Giants in seasons past resumed where he had left off as though it was preordained that he should.
Offensively we were well versed in the Buster Posey show and got that plus a whole lot more, up and down the order. The MLB box score, below, shows just how thoroughly we were outhit to total 11 runs and 18 hits. Apart from the amazing Cakes (who atypically swallow dived past two line drives, as they landed, sans ball) and encouraging at bats from Joey Bats we went quietly. Apart from one young man that is who will end this report in due time on a much more positive note, to cheer us all up. An 0 for 4 from Valhalla.
Before we get to that it must be said we need acknowledge our offense was badly hurt by a bizarre differential in what I believe I can safely call one game BABIP. Their ground balls sped through our infield like autonomous cars programmed not to collide with any infielders in the area. Ours – well, see below. The exact opposite, our luck was out.
But it might just be we saw some Braves offense last night that produced nothing tangible yet you and I will remember all our baseballing days – two thunderbolts from Hell which Zeus himself must have inspired and left us mere mortals gasping. (To say nothing of a very brave and skilled Mr. Crawford). Acuna’s two liners(?) were officially measured at an exit velocity a fraction either side of one hundred and twelve miles an hour. That same amount of power and contact had produced the 451 foot second deck blast in Citifield was compressed into a mere 90 feet journey sizzling just above the grass and ending, totally and abruptly, in a frightened glove. O my. What a spectacle, and he did it at least twice.
So it’s good to end on a positive note. Acuna himself might not agree, he must have been out of his mind at age 20 with the same results, over and over. But for us it was/is a sign of a prodigious talent that awaits, stretching out into the future. Two bad games pale by comparison. Forza Bravos!