In a jammed packed episode of The Sully Baseball Daily Podcast, I talk about listening to Yu Darvish's attempt for a perfect game while at Ikea, the futility of Heath Bell and the dominance of the San Francisco Giants.
And I determined which hitters and pitchers owned baseball for the day.
Seriously. I thought players had clauses in their contracts preventing them from skiing and playing basketball and things that can risk serious injury.
But today, San Francisco Giants starter Madison Bumgarner put all those daredevils to shame with his amazing leap. From a capsule in space, the All Star left hander jumped 128,000 feet, roughly 24 miles from the atmosphere to the ground.
As impressive as the jump was, the fact that he did it on a day where he had a start in the NLCS is mindboggling.
That puts to shame Deion Sanders playing an NFL game and being in uniform for the 1992 NLCS on the same day.
I wonder if Tim McCarver will have harsh words for Bumgarner and his start.
So it was impressive, but a tip from your pal Sully. Next time you jump from space, do it on an off day.
A little more than a month ago, the Giants were 1 game above .500 and seven games behind the Dodgers.
12 days ago, the Giants were 5 games out of first place.
This morning, Giants fans will wake up knowing their team is in first place by themselves.
On the heels of Madison Bumgarner's 1 hit masterpiece, the Giants have climbed into the penthouse by themselves.
Any combination of Giants wins and Dodgers losses equaling 128 will clinch the NL West for the Giants.
Of COURSE it would be Barry Zito who threw the first complete game shutout of the season.
Of COURSE it would be Barry Zito who got the Giants first win, NOT Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain or Madison Bumgarner.
Of COURSE it would be Zito's first shutout since 2003.
Of COURSE it would be in Coors Field!
It ALL makes sense.
He wanted the first five years to be shaky to catch us all off guard and kick butt the final 2 seasons.
That's great news for the Giants.
But it would make THIS video instantly obsolete.
The Giants are going to win the West. Right now they are tied for the Phillies for the biggest lead in any Division. And the Giants rotation is the only one in baseball that can match up with the Phillies.
But I would LOVE to see the Giants finish the year with their aces winning 12-13 games, thus creating the illusion to those who just glance at the win-loss record that San Francisco's rotation is inferior.
Right now Brian Wilson has 6 wins, just 2 fewer than Cain and Lincecum. Javier Lopez has 5 wins (including yesterday) and that is one behind Vogelsong.
I want Wilson and Lopez to each get to double digit wins. Preferably more than their All Star pitchers.
Imagine at the end of the year hearing "Brian Wilson led the team with 13 wins and Javier Lopez was second with 12. Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain had 11 wins. Ryan Vogelsong and Madison Bumgarner each had 10."
Then you get to smoke out which commentators are lazy and say "A down year for the Giants starters" etc.
Think that is crazy? Have you been WATCHING the Giants? Have you been noticed how many times the announcers say "A great start for [INSERT GIANTS STARTER HERE] but no run support"? Have you seen how many games end with a mob at home plate after a walk off win?
Have 6 more walk offs go as wins for Brian Wilson... bam! There's 12 wins right there. 5 extra inning wins go to Lopez... and that's 10 for Lopez.
And that's 11 decisions NOT going to the rotation. Throw in a fluke win here and a vulture win there and they could get up to 12-13 wins.
All that matters to a Giants fan is to pile up wins, no matter how odd they come about. The Giants have played 15 extra inning games and 38 one run games.
So pile up the wins, Javier and Brian. Lead the team... and make the other teams feel complacent
Look, the heart stopping wins are great, Giants. But it is getting a bit rough on my dad. EVERY SINGLE NIGHT he has to watch a great pitcher, like Bumgarner tonight, throw a gem with zero wiggle room and wait for late game heroics.
Sandoval's go ahead double was amazing and Crawford's game ending double play was the coolest play of the year because I was convinced it was a game winning walk off hit for the Tigers.
But understand my dad watches every inning. And tonight he was mumbling things like "We should harness the wind caused by our bats and we'd solve the energy crisis" and kept saying that Bochy has been SENTENCED to the job of Giants manager.
The Giants are defending their World Series title in as exciting a manner as I can remember. But we have guests coming over this weekend. I'd like to see my dad relax a little.
There will never be a night like this again in San Francisco.
Oh there might be another ring ceremony by China Basin. And there will no doubt be another "down to the last strike surreal walk off win" for the Giants. So far they have had two in two home games this year.
But there will never be a first ring ceremony again. Never again will there be a night where Hall of Famers Willie McCovey and Gaylord Perry get their first ever World Series rings. (Willie Mays and Orlando Cepeda got rings, but those were their second rings. Willie won in 1954. Cha Cha with the 1967 Cardinals.)
And to combine that with the surreal ending and Miguel Tejada basically saying "I want a ring too!" and you have a night that will never be replicated.
The great things about the Ring Ceremony is that it gives the previous championship a final exclamation. Everyone who got a ring (including Barry Zito) never has to wonder if they will ever reach the top of the baseball world. So many Hall of Famers played long and wonderful careers and never got that.
I wonder if the Madison Bumgarners and Buster Poseys, who spent part of 2010 in the minor leagues and won as a rookie, really understood what Perry and McCovey's rings meant.
They each played 22 seasons and never won a Series (although if McCovey's line drive eluded Bobby Richardson, then it would have been a different story.)
So 2010 is over. Focus on 2011. And if the first few games are any indication, it is going to be nuts.
When I was 21 I was finishing up my junior year at NYU, eating too much Chinese food, renting movies at Kim's Video on Bleecker street and sharing a tiny apartment with a guy whose name escapes me right now.
When Madison Bumgarner was 21, he pitched 8 shutout innings in the World Series on the road against an amazing offensive team to put the Giants to within one game of their first World Series title since moving to California.
I am going to make a judgment call and say Madison's 21st year was better than mine.
If I told you at the beginning of the NLCS that the Giants would beat Roy Halladay AND Cole Hamels, raise your hand if your would take it.
That if in Game 4, the Giants would face Joe Blanton, who hasn't pitched in nearly a month, and throw Madison Bumgarner, raise your hand if you'd take that.
Now how about if I told you that if EVERYTHING goes wrong in Game 4... they lose 20-0 and are no hit... they would still be tied 2-2 with Tim Lincecum on the mound at home? Show of hands if you would take it.
I expect to see a LOT of hands in the air.
I thought the Phillies were winning in 5. They've got to run the table to win in 6.
And tomorrow is the ONE TIME the Giants aren't going to face a former Cy Young winner or NLCS MVP on the mound.
Blanton is a decent pitcher with a big heart. Bumgarner is a solid pitcher with great stuff.
You'd have to favor the home team in that match up.
Hands up if you'd take that.
I know Giant fans shouldn't get ahead of themselves... but isn't cool to be in a situation where they SHOULDN'T get ahead of themselves?
Win tomorrow... then start getting giddy. The Giants are half way there.
Hands up if you were expecting THAT? (Mine would NOT be up.)
And now the Giants took a risk by dealing away a terrific pitch caller in Bengie Molina. But they are putting Posey behind the plate where he should be for the next 10 years and they brought in Chris Ray who should give the bullpen a little depth.
The sum total of all these moves?
A 6 game losing streak.
And not just any losing streak... the last 4 have been to the Dodgers and the Rockies, two of the teams that they are bunched up with in the NL West race.
What the hell? They are improved and yet have dropped nearly a week into the loss column.
Let's pick it up, Giants. You've got 3 more in Coors Field, and I am heading up to the Bay Area this weekend and will spend some time with my dad, the biggest Giants fan I know.
He's happier when the Giants are winning and I want a happy dad.