Thursday, April 08, 2010

There are Times You Just Know...

If you watch baseball long enough, you just know sometimes what is going to happen. Call it a feeling, deja vu, or whatever, but it's there. And if you've watched almost fifty years of baseball, that feeling happens more often than it doesn't. Let's take a couple of examples:

  • In Zack Greinke's first game of the season, he leaves with a decent sized lead. The Fan just knew it wouldn't stick. It didn't.
  • Wednesday, the Dodgers pitched back to back Ortiz. Ramon and Russ. The Fan just knew it would lead to a Dodgers loss. It did.
  • The Marlins were sailing along with a 6-1 lead in the seventh inning. The Mets got two walks off of a heretofore brilliant Nolasco, he then induces two outs and a run scores and no big deal because it's still 6-2. One more out and...but wait. Nolasco is at 105 pitches. The Mets bring in a pinch hitter. The Marlins' manager goes with a LOOGY. And the Fan just knew it would get ugly. It did. The Marlins barely scraped off with a one run win in ten innings.
But the old dowsing rod inside the Fan pulled double duty in the Tigers - Royals game. It was a tight squeaker all the way. Hochever and Scherzer were fantastic. Ni came in for the Tigers and gave up a run to make it a 1-1 game until the ninth. Now the first intuition didn't take fifty years of watching baseball to figure out. Farnsworth came in to pitch. The Fan can almost guarantee that every fan in Kansas City had the same gut reaction. Except theirs came in the form of, "Oh crap!"

Sure enough, Farnsworth did what he usually does in situations that matter. Single. Single. Single. Run. But there was when it got stupid. Inge pops out. And then of all things, the Tigers try a double steal with Miguel Cabrera and Jose Guillen. What!? Cabrera gets thrown out at third and Farnsworth gets a gift. Since that baserunner disaster poked a hole in the known Farnsworth universe, all Laird could do was pop up to end the inning.

And then the Fan knew the Tigers were doomed. It was done before it was done. The Tigers brought in their new closer, Valverde. Homer. Double. Error. Ball game. Just like that.

There are times when you just know. This was a game where that premonition was right twice. The Royals should have known better than to bring Farnsworth in when it mattered. And the Tigers should have allowed the inning to unfold in typical Farnsworth fashion but tried to force things. Once they did, it could have been any closer. Didn't matter. The Tigers were going to lose.

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