The coach still is the coach, and why not? It wouldn’t do any good to get rid of Mike Singletary at this point. He has a sense of purpose, and at times a sense of humor. You go after him, and he’s right back at you, admirable even if his record is not.
He keeps us guessing. That’s the essence of the football mind, which distills everything to “us vs. them.” A change of quarterbacks? Plays designed specifically for Brian Westbrook? Read More
There’s no crying in baseball. No permanence either. Wonder if those Dodger fans will get the hang of saying “Ooo-reebay”? Wonder if there’s any sort of chant that can be created out of “Tay-ha-dah”?
We blinked, and it’s all changed.
It would have been nice to keep things as they were, at least until December. We understand it’s a business, but does it have to be a heartbreaking one? Can’t we hold onto the magic more than a few hours? Read More
The advice has become cliché: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. What if it is broken? What if it’s a football team? What if it’s the 49ers, who need a very large repair job?
What if it’s a franchise without direction or people who could locate that direction?
We begin with a concession. The Niners could make the playoffs, because someone from the NFC West indeed is required to do so, and because the division is, in a word, awful.
Which some might use to describe the Niners, although mediocre would be more accurate. Mediocre and hugely disappointing. Read More
The other guy is getting the attention. A huge article on Jim Harbaugh in Sports Illustrated. Why not? Stanford has lost only one game. Stanford is ranked No. 7 in the nation.“I have a lot of respect for coach Harbaugh,” said Jeff Tedford.And two wins in three tries over Harbaugh.Fans get bored. Alumni get impatient. A few years ago, Tedford was the miracle worker, the man who took a Cal team that had been 1-11 and turned it around immediately to 7-5.It was 2002, and Tedford was Coach of the Year. Read More
He’s so very San Francisco, Bruce Bochy — unpretentious, unaffected and competent to the max. Maybe not a genius, but as far as managing the Giants, he’ll do until someone better comes along.
“He does a great job of getting the right guys in at the right time,” was Matt Cain’s cogent observation of Bochy’s cogent maneuvers. “That’s the reason he has the job.” Read More
The possibility became a reality. The Phillies, as suspected, have every bit what the Giants have in pitching. And as it became painfully apparent, much more than the Giants have in hitting.In a brief interview that followed the Fox game telecast Sunday night, Jimmy Rollins of the Phils made that all too clear. Not long after he made it equally clear on the field. Read More
And where is Todd Wellemeyer anyway?
No knocks, please. He did his part. And then along came Madison Bumgarner. Isn’t that the way for winning teams — changes that over the course of a long season turn out to be the proper ones?
Or changes never made, which turn out to be no less proper.
May 19, Jerry Crasnick in MLB Fanhouse on AOL: “The Giants should trade for a hitter even if it will cost them prospect Madison Bumgarner ... Read More
It was a game that had the Atlanta Braves reaching for pitches, and the media reaching for comparisons. If it wasn’t the finest game Tim Linececum ever has pitched for the Giants, it no question was the most important he ever pitched.
This was what the Giants needed in their first postseason game in seven years: A sellout crowd of 43,936 at AT&T dressed in orange and black and unbelievably raucous, and Lincecum throwing fastballs and change-ups to near perfection. Read More
The Atlanta Braves have better hitting, and even if you’re an optimist and figure the Giants can go the next step, there’s no way they beat the Philadelphia Phillies. Unless they do, and then if it’s New York Yankees or Tampa Bay Rays in the World Series. It’s a given, top to bottom, American League teams are superior to those from the National League. Read More
He kept bringing up Stanford. Which made sense. He had watched the win over Notre Dame before he left the United States. Now Tiger Woods was talking about another team, Team America, the Ryder Cup squad on which he was a wild-card pick.
In golf, the most individual of games, Tiger Woods, the most individual of competitors, has never been much for group effort. Since leaving Stanford in 1996, that is. Read More
Andrew Luck understands. Not only the subject matter of his architectural design major — that would be expected of someone from Stanford.
He understands what it means to play a football game at Notre Dame, which he will do Saturday.
“It’s a special place,” said Luck. He was there as redshirt two years ago.
“Touchdown Jesus,” he said of the mosaic on the Hesburgh Library which faces the field. “All that. It’s an honor to go play in the stadium with so much history.” Read More
So Barry Zito pitches his best game in weeks. And the Giants still lose. So Zito, Santiago Casilla, Ramon Ramirez, Javier Lopez and Sergio Romo combine for a one-hitter. And the Giants still lose. It’s going to be a long winter.
Twice this season, Giant pitchers — Jonathan Sanchez back in April, Zito and the entourage Monday night — limited the other team, respectively the Padres and the Dodgers, to one lousy hit. Twice this season the Giants lost those games. Read More
‘They crawl, they baffle, they bite,” was the headline in the New York Times. No, not the Yankees. Bed bugs, although to the A’s, it may be hard to distinguish.
New York has been hit by an infestation. The A’s merely are being eaten up by Yankee hitting.
The tennis U.S. Open is under way at Flushing Meadows in Queens, the last of the year’s Grand Slams, a chance for a competitor to find out exactly how good he or she is against the best. Read More
Slogans they got. You’re familiar with “Commitment to Excellence,” the words if not the results. Now the Raiders are presenting players
T-shirts that in effect sneer at the derision the team unfortunately has earned in recent years.
“The Affirmation, Champions,” one motto begins, on the front and then switches to the back. “We are going to win the AFC West and then after the Super Bowl.” My, my. Read More
The hero passes, the moment lives. In photos on the club level of AT&T Park. In recordings played a thousand times. “The Giants win the pennant! The Giants win the pennant.”
One swing of the bat, and ecstasy. And agony.
The greats keep leaving us: Warren Spahn, Dom DiMaggio and now at age 86, Bobby Thomson, who hit the “Shot Heard ’Round the World.”
We still hear Russ Hodges’ voice. We still see the celebration at home plate, where a 20-year-old named Willie Mays would have been the next batter. Read More