by Ken Hurst, November 3, 2010
Like our Editor who wrote a fine, poignant article in the AVA last week, I, too, am mesmerized by the 2010 SF Giants Baseball Team playing in the World Series against the Texas Rangers. Three reasons I am in love with this year's team are Giant players Tim Lincecum, Juan Uribe and Buster Posey.
Lincecum is a frail, long-haired power pitcher who seems to live on corn chips. He gains his power with a flexible wind-up and a violent thrust toward the plate. His terrific speed is made possible because his pitching arm lags behind his flexible motion so that the final violent thrust forward gives his pitching arm such leverage that when his arm is pulled forward, his timing on the snap of his wrist makes him into a human slingshot.
Uribe is an oddity in the modern game. He is an excellent defensive player. He is very quick and he has a live arm that is very accurate. Almost every time he is interviewed after he has played a good game, he says, "This is my town." And one believes that he is acquainted with many of the saloons in his town.
Posey was not called up to the big show from the minors until May. Yet, his steady bat and (mostly) his poise and fielding ability at the tough catcher's position caused the players in the National League to vote him Rookie of the Year. The Sports Writers' Rookie of the Year Award comes after the World Series.
After the Giants' Edgar Renteria lofted a beautiful home run ball over the cheering fans in the left field stands to break a scoreless tie in the bottom of the fifth inning of the second game of the World Series, the television cameras pulled way back from Candlestick Park showing the left field stands and way beyond the ball park to a luminous blue sky background with circular puffy grey clouds in the foreground blended together to form a magical color book sky that could have been painted only by a talented little girl or little boy on an old wooden desk.
It was still raining hard here on the high Greenwood Ridge but the magical sky above the waving hands in the stands gave me a warm glow that felt reminiscent of the way I have not felt about baseball since in the l950s and 1960s. The next day on Friday, the teams were traveling from California to Texas and I went into Boonville and talked with Mouse and Harold Hulbert at the Redwood Drive-in.
After awhile, Harold said, “I wish they were playing again tonight.” I said “Yeah, me too.”
One thing that should be mentioned briefly about steroids and baseball. The huge heads and bodies of the juicers are the icing on the cake. The cake, the real ugly substance of steroids is the HGH (Human Growth Hormone) part of the juiced up cocktail. HGH enhances one's vision an enormous amount. And, in baseball if you can see it you can hit it. The ponderous bodies are to impress l6-year old girls and nerds.