Pic via (@kvte)
What’s that sound?
It’s a funny, squeaky sound.
We aren't very lucky in Philadelphia. Sure, it's always sunny here and for the last four years we’ve been spoiled by the riches of our baseball team, but let’s face it, we still sort of expect the worst to happen.
Last night, I watched Jaime Garcia nibble on the bottom edge of the strike zone for the better part of five innings. My general demeanor can best be likened to the bald Natalie Portman (her head, perverts) jail cell scenes in V for Vendetta. At times I watched from the fetal position, and when Phillies batters would chase off-speed crap early in the count, I screeched in horror like when those zealous shower nozzles handed Natalie a forced cleansing. Why is this happening to me?
It was all horrifying, really. And judging by Tweets like this one, I’m guessing you felt the same way.
Then something funny happened.
As Cole Hamels began to develop his angry eye (you know what I’m talking about), the feeling of impending doom subsided. The Cardinals had baserunners in every inning last night, yet they were unable to get any of them across the plate with Hamels on the mound. In the sixth inning, what shaped up to be Hamels’ last, a faint sound sauntered in from center field. A funny, squeaky sound:
As someone who just watched the ESPN special on Steve Bartman (and who paces the living room between every pitch during the final innings of playoff games) I’m a big believer in signs and superstitions. Watching that furry bastard scamper behind the left side of the infield made me realize that by the end of the night, one fan base was going celebrate nature’s gift to Disney… and the other would start stocking a cache of slingshots.
I don’t like violence, but I love animated shorts. Please let this be our good luck charm.
10 minutes later, Ben Francisco (Ben. Francisco.) hit a three-run home run. The squirrel, as it turned out, was a Phillies fan:
Incredibly, the two elements we hear so much about – Tony La Russa’s quirky managing and Yadier Molina’s superb catching – teamed up to nip the Cardinals in the ass. First, Molina fanned on a catchable pitch in the dirt which allowed Victorino to advance to second. Mayberry and Polanco were retired, but then, with Victorino still on second because of Molina’s error, La Russa – for once – made a sound baseball decision by walking Chooch to get to the pitcher’s spot. He’d do it again, too: [STLToday.com]
Well, if you follow our club with Ruiz over the years, he's gotten as many big hits as the guys in the middle of the lineup. He just terrorizes us, and he's already hit two balls hard. The matchup we liked, I liked. I made the decision. Francisco has had a tough time with Jaime, so it really wasn't a tough call.
Unfortunately for La Russa, Ben Francisco punishes fastballs. 3-0 Phillies.
Oh yeah, and that funny, squeaky sound?
Whoomp… there goes another rubber tree plant. 9 mas.
Side note: As reader John pointed out on Twitter, what were the Cardinals fans who reached out to catch the squirrel going to do with it once they got it? Put it in a coat and smash it with a hammer? This seemed like a losing scenario anyway you sliced it.
Game time tonight, 6:07.