Nobody wants their parade rained upon, but when it happened so literally to the Giants after they won their third World Series five years, it was beautiful.
Strangely beautiful, no doubt. Sopping-wet confetti is exactly nobody's idea of a good time, but again quite literally, nothing was going to dampen anybody's spirits on that glorious day.
Now that the big, sloppy, wet mess has been cleaned up, however, it feels like the Giants' parade is again being rained upon, this time figuratively. And given the fatalistic tone and vociferous volume of their fan base's reaction, it's almost as though the literal parade never even happened.
Chalk it up to our microwave, what-have-you-done-for-me-today societal groupthink all you want, but it's still a little bit sad and more than a little bit shortsighted.
So you lost your beloved “Panda.” You lost out on Jon Lester. And while it feels quite a bit less significant, you're probably going to lose Michael Morse, who's postseason contributions were far from insignificant, as well.
Bummers all around. Re-signing the “Panda,” signing Lester and retaining the sporadic services of Morse would've been awesome. There would've been every reason to think that the Giants could break that every-other-year pattern and make a legitimate run at the increasingly rare back-to-back championships.
But let's mix in a little perspective here, folks. This isn't the Florida Marlins we're talking about. Twice the Marlins won a World Series and almost immediately conducted a spirit-sapping fire sale. It was elective surgery, and it went about as well as a horribly botched boob job.
What's happening to the Giants is not elective surgery at all. Sure, they were hoping to augment a little up top with their pursuit of Lester, but the “Panda” and Morse situations are simply the price of doing business in big-league baseball these days.
They did everything they could to keep Pablo Sandoval, but when Michael Jordan asks you to play with him, you sign up on the spot. That's basically what happened with Sandoval. Boston's David Ortiz IS Jordan to Latin American baseball players, and Ortiz didn't just ask Sandoval to play with him. He told him that when “Big Papi” decides to hang up his spikes — and that day is coming soon — Sandoval would be in line to take over and become Jordan himself.
The minute those two sat down to talk, it was over. Sandoval was gone. And viewed in that context, it's kind of hard to blame the guy. You can be disappointed, or angry, or hurt. But if you look at it from a completely objective perspective, you understand the decision.
Lester went with his heart, too. Think about it: Anybody who played for the Red Sox when Theo Epstein was the general manager to engineer the destruction of the Curse of the Bambino must have an incredible sense of appreciation for — and loyalty to — the man. And when presented with an opportunity to be a part of much the same scenario in a different but similarly cool and historic and long-suffering city, of course those players are going to sign on.
So let it go. Let Morse go, too. It's not like the cupboard is bare. Bruce Bochy and Brian Sabean are still in San Francisco. So is AT&T Park. So are Madison Bumgarner and Buster Posey and Joe Panik and Brandon Crawford and Brandon Belt and Hunter Pence and Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain and Tim Hudson and Santiago Casilla and Jeremy Affeldt, on and on and on.
Granted, we have no idea which Matt Cain is still around. But still around he is, as are three gleaming trophies to remind everyone that rain or shine, literal or figurative, Giants fans have had it better than the fans of every other team in baseball for the past five years.
Mychael Urban, a longtime Bay Area-based sportswriter and broadcaster, is the host of “Inside the Bigs,” which airs every Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon on KGMZ “The Game” (95.7 FM).