Most of the prose flowing from San Francisco about its baseball team focused on the playoffs. Must be nice.
Seems like the Giants are focused on the playoffs, too. They didn’t exactly blow through the Padres in San Diego over the weekend, losing 3-1 on Saturday and needing back-to-back ninth inning home runs Sunday to salvage a series victory. Writes Henry Schulman in the San Francisco Chronicle:
The optimist would say that the Giants are going through a temporary lackadaisical spell with their playoff ticket punched, which is not uncommon, and that once their Division Series begins Saturday, they will be back on track.
On the other hand, that rose-colored picture can be hard to see through the haze of errors, mental blunders and pitching troubles plaguing the National League West champs.
Just how lackadaisical have the Giants been?
From the San Jose Mercury News:
The Giants didn’t execute for much of the day Sunday. Brandon Belt was thrown out at home after inexplicably going back to tag up at third base on a single to right, and a throwing error by Hector Sanchez led to a Padres run. The Giants left the bases loaded in the second inning and scored just once in the fourth inning despite three hits and two walks.
Maybe, somehow, the Dodgers are the answer to the Giants’ problems. From CSNBayArea.com:
This series at Dodger Stadium might be exactly what the Giants need – a motivated opponent throwing quality pitching at them to help them get tuned up for the postseason.
As advantageous as the Giants’ downy soft schedule has been in September, they haven’t faced many high-level arms. And they’re sure to see good ones (Mat Latos, Gio Gonzalez, etc.) very soon.
So ending the season with Clayton Kershaw on Wednesday could be constructive, for once.
Plus, there’s the chance to eliminate the Dodgers. And you don’t need to be Wayne Franklin to realize that’s a good thing.