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Tag:Brian Wilson
Posted on: March 30, 2011 3:13 pm
Edited on: March 30, 2011 4:05 pm
 

The All-DL opening day All-Stars

It's a team that might contend for a title, if it could only get on the field.

Then again, that's exactly the problem.

Think of the players that will (or likely will) begin the season on the disabled list. It's quite a group, lacking a little (for now) on the left side of the infield and behind the plate, but overflowing with top-level starting pitching and back-of-the-bullpen depth.

Not all the opening day rosters are official yet. Some teams are waiting until closer to Thursday's 11 a.m. deadline for final decisions, which only means that the All-DL-Stars could have an even better lineup by the time the first pitch is thrown.

Jason Bay, for example, should be your All-DL-Star left fielder by then. The Mets are expected to put him on the disabled list, but they haven't said so publicly yet. So I left him off, in part because this team is strong enough without him.

For now, we'll only go with guys we're pretty sure of.

So here goes:

1B -- Kendrys Morales, Angels

2B -- Chase Utley, Phillies

SS -- Clint Barmes, Astros

3B -- Nick Punto, Cardinals

LF -- Cody Ross, Giants (Bay could take his spot)

CF -- Grady Sizemore, Indians (with Franklin Gutierrez also available)

RF -- Corey Hart, Brewers

C -- Jonathan Lucroy, Brewers

Rotation -- Adam Wainwright, Cardinals; Zack Greinke, Brewers; Johan Santana, Mets; Mat Latos, Padres; Brandon Morrow, Blue Jays (with Johnny Cueto, Homer Bailey and others in reserve)

Closer -- Brian Wilson, Giants (with the Phillies' Brad Lidge and the A's Andrew Bailey setting him up)

You'd take that team, wouldn't you?

You'd be guaranteed to lose on opening day, because not one of them could play, but you'd take that team.


Posted on: February 14, 2011 5:22 pm
 

The closer and the candy jar

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- The Giants are champions, but the Giants are still fun.

The latest example: Closer Brian Wilson announcing Monday, on the first day of spring training, that the ball from the final out of the World Series is in "a Halloween candy jar."

The team's reaction, through manager Bruce Bochy: "Well, when you mention the name, that's not surprising. That seems appropriate for Willy."

It doesn't sound like this is headed to court.

You might remember that when the Red Sox broke their curse by winning the 2004 World Series, the fate of the final-out ball did end up in court, after Doug Mientkiewicz refused the team's request for the ball.

This is different, in part because Wilson said the Giants have never asked him for the ball . . . and in part, because the Giants are a lot more fun than the Red Sox.

Anyway, the candy jar.

Wilson said that catcher Buster Posey gave him the ball, a while after Wilson used it to strike out Nelson Cruz and give San Francisco its first-ever title. Wilson said he was a little surprised that Posey had managed to keep the ball through the celebration, but he took it.

He took it home, and needed somewhere to put it. And, he said, he saw a left-over candy jar.

"I thought, 'I'm not going to lose it, and it was a delicious treat,' " Wilson said.

Posted on: November 1, 2010 10:30 pm
 

It can be done -- Giants win the World Series

ARLINGTON, Texas -- As it turns out, a team from San Francisco is allowed to win the World Series.

And as it turns out, you can win a World Series with a team built almost entirely on pitching.

It can be done. The Giants just proved it.

And if you're asking how in the world they became champions with that lineup, you're asking the wrong question. They became champions because of that rotation.

They shut down the Rangers one more time Monday night in Game 5, with Tim Lincecum outdueling Cliff Lee in a 3-1 game. The Giants, as usual, won with just enough offense, with a three-run Edgar Renteria home run in the seventh inning breaking up a scoreless game.

They won the World Series, four games to one, and in two of those wins, the Rangers never scored. In the five games combined, the Rangers had just 12 runs, after scoring 59 in 11 games to eliminate the Rays and the Yankees.

Lincecum wasn't able to match rotation mates Matt Cain and Madison Bumgarner by throwing the Giants' third shutout of the World Series, but he allowed just Nelson Cruz's solo home run in the seventh.

In their 15 postseason games, against the Braves, Phillies and Rangers, the Giants allowed just 41 runs, not even three a game on average. The starting rotation pitched a total of 97 2/3 innings in the postseason, allowing just 24 earned runs for a 2.21 ERA.

The bullpen was almost as good. Closer Brian Wilson didn't allow an earned run the entire postseason.

Because of the pitching, the Giants were able to win five postseason games where they scored three runs or fewer. They were able to win with a lineup that didn't come close to matching up in firepower with the one the Rangers put on the field each day.

In the clinching game, the Giants won with Cody Ross batting cleanup and Juan Uribe hitting fifth. Ross was a late-season waiver acquisition, and when the playoffs began he and Uribe hit near the bottom of the Giants order.

Doesn't matter. They won, as Giants teams hadn't been able to win in three previous World Series trips since the franchise moved to San Francisco in 1958.

Giants fans remember Bobby Richardson's catch in 1962, and the earthquake that allowed the A's to use just two starting pitchers in 1989, and Game 6 against the Angels in 2002.

But now they'll also remember Lincecum and Cain, Bumgarner and Wilson, Renteria and Ross and Buster Posey.

They'll never forget the 2010 Giants, the team that proved it could be done.

 
 
 
 
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