Tuesday, April 13, 2010
What's not to love?
I don't mean to keep gushing like a North Hollywood white trash school girl looking at a Justin Bieber Dodgers billboard, but I just can't help it. I just love this Giants team. Maybe sometime soon I'll write something about home runs or stankeyes or cool shirts emblazoned with Krukowisms, but right now I just can't. I'm too excited.
I'm too excited about Timmy and Kung Fu, and even too excited about Rowand and Renteria. I just love this Giants team.
Now, it probably goes without saying that most people reading this already root for the Gyros. Then it probably goes down to about 80% of readers who actually really love the Giants. There is a difference however between loving the team you root for, and actually loving the roster, and the way they get things done-- a big difference.
None of us really loved the 2009 Giants team. Sure it was gutsy, and did waaaay more than was expected of it, but Lord knows it was deeply flawed, and among the more frustrating things ever. Did we still love the Giants? Hell yeah we did. Just like we hated the Dodgers. That never changes.
The difference between 2009 and this 2010 season still in its early infancy, is that I think I may just love this roster and this team. Would I feel differently if we'd started 1-6? Probably. Who wouldn't? If we were to go 1-6 in our next 7 games, would I still love the roster? Yeah, I think I would, and here's my sick "under the influence of winning" rationalization.
There isn't a guy on this team that I hate. I mean, yeah, I really didn't like "The Retarded 'R' Brothers" of 2009 (Rowand & Renteria). Many of us used the words hate towards them. I was close. Hell, I think I even had a poll question up here last season asking if you "truly hated Edgar Renteria". Sick, I know, but look, could you blame us? Those two make way too much money and played horribly.
I don't think our "hatred" of those two guys was real. It was disgust and frustration, but I think when fans truly hate a ballplayer, they cannot be forgiven and cannot achieve new life with that fanbase. Think Milton Bradley being run out of Wrigley; now that's some serious hate right there. Think Stephen Jackson and how he left the Warriors.
Back to Rowand and Renteria's situation, which is very similar to another guy you know.
May I present to you Barry Zito as exhibit A. He's still borderline with some folk, but he's managed to somehow resurrect his Giant career for the most part in a matter of 25 or so starts. Plus, he plunked Prince Fielder and is now a supposed "leader in the clubhouse".
Remember how much we "hated" Zito?
We didn't care what happened to him. We wanted his contract bought out, we wanted him in the bullpen, we wanted him in Fresno... just anywhere but Mays Field. It was honestly the closest thing to hatred I've seen since "The Great Lunatic Fringe/Armando Benitez Revolt of Twenty-ot-Seven".
The point is, when players begin to perform at an acceptable level, they instantly become likeable, or at least tolerable. With Renteria opening the season at a .440 clip and hitting that dong the other day against Atlanta, I'm thiiiiiiiissssss close to already forgiving and forgetting. Same thing with Rowand. He still swings at a lot of crap, but dude, after his 0-10 start in Houston to open the season, guess what he's hitting. Seriously, guess.
Aaron Rowand is hitting .435 since those first two games. Not only that, but he's even knocked in a few runs.
What I'm trying to say here is that with Zeets, Row, and Edgar on their way to being embraced by Giants Nation, there's no one left to dislike, and by that logic, you like the rest of the roster. Right?
No one screams "Freakin Bum!" at you when you peruse the roster. Billy Mota? He's been pretty solid so far. A.U. Velez? Guy's funny looking and we don't know what we're getting from him, but hey he hit that double the other day! Bowker? Schierholtz? Whiteside? Huff? Wellemeyer? They're all okay. See what I mean?
It just struck me during the shellacking of the Buckos on Monday. These guys are just fun to root for and to watch play. Sandoval is just plain hilarious in every way, plus he's not off-balance anymore (which scared me the other day if you'll recall). Bengie is also amusing in his own way, and he's hitting like the pressure is off. Huff is like a walking comedy act, and I have a feeling he's going to be a KNBR staple at some point this season. And that's without even mentioning what a pleasure it is to watch this pitching staff go to work.
Anyway, I hope you'll forgive my gushing over this team. I can't help it. If you have a more cynical view of things and would rather focus on the past or on how many games we've played thus far, please, I encourage you to seek your fan-perspective blogging from another site.
Around here, I love this team, and I don't care who knows it.