Thursday, May 26, 2011

And then it just wasn't fun any more.

Baseball is an escape. You buy your ticket or turn on the TV and suddenly your biggest problem isn’t that asshole of a boss or how you’re going to make a credit card payment this month or whether that guy you met is ever going to call. Your biggest problem now is how to get a guy on third home with two outs in a tie game and a .228 hitter at the plate who looks like he wants to swing at anything thrown in his general direction. It’s still stressful, but it’s a different kind of stress. It’s Giants Stress. If you’ve been a fan of this team for any amount of time, you know what I mean.

That’s why last night was so jarring. What happened instantly yanked us out of Giants Stress and into real stress, the second Buster Posey was clawing at the dirt and screaming and clearly badly hurt. Just like that, we were all back in reality, and it felt just awful.

(Contra Costa Times photo)

How we got here was a perfect little microcosm of Giants baseball, and more specifically, Rule Number One of Giants Baseball: It Is Never Easy. In the top of the 9th, the Marlins scored three times to open a 6-2 lead. It looked like it was over, but amazingly enough, in the bottom of the 9th, the Giants scored two to close it to 6-4, and then Aubrey Huff, who had been 0-4 and looked genuinely lost at the plate, singled to score two more. We went to extra innings tied at 6.

Fast forward to the 12th. Still tied. The Marlins’ Scott Cousins on 3rd when Emilio Bonifacio pops up and Cousins comes screaming towards home. Posey blocks the plate, tries to corral Schierholtz’s throw, when Cousins plows into him at full speed, Posey’s leg trapped underneath him.

It was immediately obvious that something was very, very wrong. Posey was slamming his hands against the ground and writhing in pain. Giants staff crowded around him.

I couldn’t look at the replays. I heard The Wife gasp behind me. “Yeah,” she said, “it looks bad.”

And in that second, I lost all interest in this game of baseball. I’m not sure if I have the same reaction if it’s a different player, but Posey seems like such a kid – I mean, he’s 24, but looks about 16 – that I think we feel sort of protective about him. Like he’s our kid brother and we need to look out for him. I went to bed feeling sick.

We forget that baseball can be a dangerous game and, by all accounts, it was a clean play at the plate. There isn’t a lot of information right now about how bad the injury is but I think it’s bad. I’m sure I’ll be able to escape again at a baseball game, but right now, it just feels bad.

THIS JUST IN: The rumor is broken leg and torn ligaments. Poor kid.


Anonymous said...

Last night, a friend was visiting so I didn't have the game on. I'm kinda glad I missed it, because just reading the stories and seeing the photos has almost brought me to tears. I think watching it happen would have wrecked me.

Tamagosan said...

Not fun anymore indeed.

Last night at the brewpub if they knew what happened in the game and got the whole tied-in-the-9th-lost-in-extra-innings story and was fairly disappointed, but in a normal way. And basketball dominated the TVs, so didn't see any ESPN footage of real sports.

Then this morning I get a scary e-mail from a friend with a link to the video that I instinctively did NOT watch. Now I'm glad I read this beforehand to make sure I don't watch it.

Poor Buster, poor kid.

periqueblend said...

I for one am only going to remember that game as the time Romo threw 10 pitches to strike out the side. (If Botchy leaves him in, the Giants don't need to play the 12th, Posey stays uninjured, and The Giants Win the World Series Again.)