Sunday, October 23, 2011

World Series Game 3: Three Good, Three Bad.

by Jason Wojciechowski

Good gracious was that a lot of baseball.

Putting together incomprehensible senstences from just
bits of string and stray memories.


First. Albert Pujols, duh. Three homers, all after the fifth inning, five hits, an uncountable infinity of runs created. My original notes to say something nice about Pujols came in the fifth inning, when he laced a line drive single up the middle. I wanted to talk about what a thing of a beauty his swing is, the controlled force and elegant length of it, how right-handed batters, I think because of the direction their momentum carries them and the way they have to reverse that momentum to start running to first, typically don't have swings that immediately please us the way lefties do (and which also inspired a Tim MacGyver McCarver ramble late in the game about how teams should have lefty/righty hitting coaches), with Pujols the notable exception. All of this becomes a tad trite when a man hits three homers in a World Series game, though. Of course he has an amazing swing.

Second. Matt Harrison made a very nice, athletic defense play on a weak chopper toward the third base side and short in the top of the fourth, grabbing the ball and making a backhand flip to Yorvit Torrealba to get Jon Jay coming to the plate. It was in sharp contrast to Mike Napoli's throw home earlier in the inning that should have been a relatively easy play for a major-league first baseman but instead went well over into the left-hand hitter's box and shot past Torrealba, allowing two St. Louis runs to score. I hope he talked to the media afterward.

Third. Allen Craig's first inning bomb of a homer to left field was awesome, even if it set off a spate of weird "he's not a future star" on Twitter while I didn't actually see anyone saying that he was a future star. Anyway, he's a very useful player who deserves a lot more playing time than he's going to get if Albert Pujols re-signs with St. Louis.


First. The jackass in left field who threw some sort of rubber or stuffed ball onto the field in the bottom of the seventh to try to distract Matt Holliday from catching Nelson Cruz's fly ball. I don't want to give him more attention than I should, so I won't link to a picture or anything. Just know, dude, that you're a jackass. And your throw was horrible.

Second. The horrible, inexcusably blown call at first base in the top of the fourth, when Elvis Andrus fed Ian Kinsler on a double play attempt and Kinsler's throw pulled Mike Napoli off the bag and into a leap-and-tag situation. It was pretty bad all around -- Kinsler's throw had no reason to be that bad, Matt Holliday should have seen Napoli leaving the bag and gone into a slide to avoid the tag, and the umpire utterly missed tag that Napoli did put on. From the replay, it didn't even particularly look like a bare brush tag -- Napoli got him about as solidly as a first baseman gets a runner in that situation. #robotumps etc.

Third. Blowouts in the World Series. We've been a little spoiled this year with down-to-the-wire races for the Wild Card, multiple Game Fives in the Division Series, and so on. A four-hour game that finishes 16-7 was bound to happen at some point, but that doesn't mean I have to like it.

I won't be able to watch the game live tonight, as I have a pseudo-wedding to attend from 4pm to 8pm (I'm on the west coast). I'm watching on the DVR, though. Just don't call me or text me with any updates! (Not that any of you have my number. Still!)

1 comment:

David said...

When I saw that blown call, all I thought was "Don Denkinger all over again." And I wasn't even alive for Denkinger's blown call. But it does seem to me that the Cardinals are on the lucky end of more postseason oddities than pretty much anyone else, and then it made me seeth as a Brewers fan. Argh. If St. Louis wins this series, I don't know that I'll ever get over it.