It’s a good World Series, isn’t it?
In New York, it’s not getting a lot of interest, but the locals have moved on to their mediocre hockey, basketball and football teams.
Game 1 was a rout, and I must admit I slept through Game 2 (I have the flu to blame). The home run heroics of Omar Infante, however, have not been forgotten by this blogger, though they’re still not as monumental as Alex Gonzalez’s 2003 12th-inning walk off cuadrangular against Los Yanquis.
Game 3 was a genuine nail-biter, with speedy Alcides Escobar of La Sabana scoring two crucial runs for Kansas City in the 3-2 victory, and Gold Glover Salvador Perez pouncing on a late-inning bunt like a dog on a bone. What did Ozzie Guillen once say (what has Ozzie Guillen not said?): “We don’t play small ball. We play baseball.” Damn straight.
Game 4 produced a genuine VZ inning, the sort of frame which occurs only in the dreams of bloggers like me.
In the top of the third, the Royals pushed across four runs on some slap hitting and questionable Giant defending. Escobar led off with a single. Later, after said defensive transgressions, Infante and Perez had RBI singles. It was like watching (or in my case, listening to the ESPN radio broadcast of) a wandering cow in the Amazon being devoured by a swarm of moquitos, bite by bite.
At last, Giants manager Bruce Bochy summoned help, none other than temperamental righty Jean (Who Moved) Machi. Big Jean–all 6′, 255 lbs of him– made it exciting–he walked the first hitter and went to 3-2 on the pitcher Jason Vargas (batting for the second time in the inning) before striking him out (lowering his World Series ERA from 54 to 27). Between batters, Pablo Sandoval came to the mound to impart some Panda-like zen calm and wisdom to his the Tiger of El Tigre, who went 7-1 for Los Gigantes this season in just 66 innings.
There you have it–a half inning in which all six Venezuelans were crucially involved, because Yusmiero Petit was waiting in the wings in case Machi imploded.
In the bottom of the third, Sandoval struck out the end a San Francisco rally, but this wasn’t the Panda’s last time around the bamboo patch. Unlikely playoff hero Petit shut the Royals down for three innings (and even hit a single himself), and the Panda had sweet redemption in the sixth, driving home two go-ahead runs to continue a run of playoff excellence. Petit, meanwhile, has pitched 12 scoreless October innings, despite the crazy Abraham Lincoln facial hair. You think his old teammates from the 2011 Oaxaca Warriors in Mexico are cheering on Yusmeiro now?
Tonight, Game 5, and the two aces line up again at Telecommunications Company Park beneath the awesome new Oakland Bay Bridge. What more could a baseball fan ask?