Eclecticity: Dan Shafer's Web Log : Where author, poet, sports fanatic, spiritual teacher, and dabbler in things Pythonesque and Revolution(ary) Dan Shafer holds forth on various topics of interest primarily to him
Updated: 11/13/02; 1:50:31 PM.


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Saturday, October 19, 2002

A Big Win for San Francisco

Any time you can win the first game of a seven-game playoff series on the road, you significantly increase your chances of taking the whole thing home with you.

Tonight, the San Francisco Giants won the first game on the road for the third straight time in this post-season, taking a hard-fought 4-3 victory from the Anaheim Angels to take a 1-0 lead in the World Series.

Barry Bonds homered in his first-ever trip to the World Series plate, but it was J. T. Snow's two-run shot in the sixth that made the difference in the game. Jason Schmidt was dominating on the mound but when things went south, they went in a hurry. It looked for a few minutes like the Angels would break out their famously annoying Rally Monkey to turn the tables on the G-Men. But the triple-threat of Felix Rodriguez, Tim Worrell, and closer Rob Nen came in and kept things in check.

We are all expecting a hard-fought, closely scored Series and Game One did nothing to disabuse us of that expectation. There was great defense on both sides. The Long Ball made the biggest difference but there was lots of opportunity for Little Ball to come into play as well.

All in all, a satisfying game and a wonderful first-game win for the Giants.

Next up: Russ Ortiz.
9:00:28 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Bottom of the Nenth

Three outs away. So much can happen.

One down on a fly to right.

The X-Factor is up now. Wow, Nen was a bit wild there on the first pitch. Great nasty pitch for a K. One out left.

If we were at Pac Bell we'd be on our feet cheering and stomping. Two out, two strikes.

Game over, dude! Giants win it, 4-3.
8:54:37 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Top of Ninth

Well, we need a rally here but the first two guys are out. We do well with two outs, but this guy's pitching motion is weird. Should be illegal, probably.

Hey, why not? If the NFL can make a rule that it is now illegal to put foreign objects in your socks, why can't MLB decide this guy's herky-jerky-fakey motion vioaltes the balk rule?

A guy can dream, can't he?

Three up, three down. Can Nen make one run stand up?

Gut-check time.

Giants 4, Angels 3
8:43:07 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Bottom of Eighth

Worrell taking over on the mound. I've been a tad disappointed in him in the postseason but he's basically a sound pitcher. Let's see where this goes. Glaus leads off. He's hurt us tonight.

Great third strike. Wow. No fear. One gone.

OK. Two up, two down. One more out and we get a shot at adding some insurance.

For a 4-3 game, this has played surprisingly long. We're just about at 3-1/2 hours already. I think that's a bit longer than the average nine-inning game this year.

Shit. Two-out walk. And Mr. Buck has to remind us once again that the tying run is on. What does he think his viewers are? Morons?

My stomach is a big knot.

3-0 to the pinch hitter. I thought two of those pitches were strikes. But the home plate umpire's done a great job tonight and he's been really consistent, so I can't complain. Butt-clinch, yes. Complain? No.

OK, that's better. Full count.

Inning over. Phew.

Giants 4, Angels 3, Angels down to their last three at bats.
8:36:18 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Top of Eighth

Giants need to score a couple this inning. The Angels are known for late-inning rallies. A big inning would be nice but it's likely F-Rod/Worrell and Nen can make a three-run lead stand up.

Superman's hitting woes continue.

They bring in Schoenweiss just to get Bonds. He walks him on four pitches. Sheesh. I mean, walking him is one thing. Doing it on four pitches? Why switch pitchers?

Bonds running averts the double play off Santiago's bat. Two down, rally time.

Full count, so Bonds can break on the pitch, which makes it easier to score on a shallow single.

Shit. We needed a rally. Stirking out on that pitch, which was ball four, was not a happy moment.

Giants 4, Angels 3
8:19:58 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Bottom of Seventh

OK, we need a 1-2-3 inning here from Rodriguez.

First big K. Nothing but heat. One gone.

You gotta hit 'em where they ain't, Angels! Two gone.

Troy (Two-Homer) Glaus on deck. Let's end this one here, F-Rod.

Great inning. Exactly what we needed.

Now the Big Thunder for the Giants.

Giants 4, Angels 3
8:00:18 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Top of Seventh

Joe Buck is right.. Baker is the best manager in baseball.

We just saw what I call the "obligatory fourth-pitch strike." If the count is 3-0, anything close to the strike zone will be called a strike, without fail.

Great defensive play by Anderson. Nice.

First pitch on Aurilia was the first really bad strike call I've seen tonight. That pitch was outside by 3-4 inches.

What many people don't realize is that by calling a bad strike like that, the umpire takes the bat out of the hitter's hands. He has to think about protecting the plate, so he swings at anything close. All too often, a bad strike call early in the count leads to a hitter making an out he might not otherwise have made.

Giants go 1-2-3 in the seventh. Seventh-inning stretch. Whew. Tense game.

Giants 4, Angels 3
7:46:08 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Bottom of Sixth

Geez, I thought it was the Giants who lived by the home run.Clearly a mistake by Schmidt, who came inside on a pitch that Santiago called for away.

Make JT's homer really huge, though.

Fox comes up with the virtual manager question whether Dusty should pull Schmidt. Stupid question. With nobody warming up, how could he? Sheesh. These guys don't quite get interactive TV yet, do they?

First walk of the night. Schmidt looks like he's trying too hard. He's got gas left. I'd leave him in.

One good out on what we used to call (for reasons lost to antiquity) a "can of corn."

Run-and-hit erases the double play. Nice call by Sciosia. (McCarver says it was a hit-and-run but I think it was a run-and-hit. The difference? In a run-and-hit the baserunner's intent is to steal whether or not there's a hit.)

Just for the record, I hate McCarver's use of "plate" as a verb. He scored him, he didn't "plate" him.

Schmidt did a decent job. F-Rod coming in now. Hopefully he puts the fire out. This is darned exciting baseball, alright!

Alright. Nice play to end the inning. JT's homer looks bigger and bigger.

Giants 4, Angels 3
7:37:58 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Top of Sixth

When teams put the shift on Bonds, I think he ought to just slap the ball to the left side a few times. Maybe then he'd also get some hits to the right side when opponents had to take the shift off. I don't understand that at all.

(My wife just discovered that my story on the game doesn't link properly. I stored the local server address rather than the public blog address. Here's the right link. I'll fix the online version after the game.

Washburn seems to be getting stronger as the game goes. Of course, so does Schmidt. Maybe 2-1 is the final? Nawwww.

One on, two out. We got 'em right where we want 'em.

We've forced Washburn over 100 pitches in six innings. That's very good. If he does leave the game, I think the Giants have a better chance to get a bigger lead.

Home Run JT!!!!!! Awwwwwwwwright!!!!!!!!!1

Giants 4, Angels 1.

This is huge!

Pitching change. Now the fun begins. (Notice again how the Giants play with two gone.)

Giants 4, Angels 1
7:22:28 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Bottom of Fifth

Good wheels on Eckstein. Infield singles are exciting plays a good bit of the time.

I was just noticing how much younger than Baker Scioscia looks. He is, by a bit. If the Angels site had background and bios on coaches, I could tell you by how much.

Great focus and play by JT. That's an easy play not to make without the slip. My wife points out he never lost sight of the ball even when he was flat on his back on the nasty surface.

Anderson is dangerous in this situation. If we can get out of this one we can coast for an inning or two.

Wow. Biggest K of the night for Mr. Schmidt.

Giants 2, Angels 1
7:06:07 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Top of Fifth

Shinjo hates batting below #5 in the order. Tough. He hasn't hit his way to the top. This is one of the very few disappointing moves the Giants have made in recent seasons. Alright, leadoff single!

I'm really surprised the Giants didn't put Damon Minor on the roster for the Angels. Instead, he left Pedro Feliz and Ramon Martinez on the roster. So we have no left-handed power outside of Bonds. That could prove to be a strategic error.

I'm surprised Washburn is this bad at holding runners on. He looks just like dumb rookie.

Good sac bunt by Lofton. As McCarver points out, the NL teams do a lot more little ball (including bunting) than the AL teams. Part of that is also attributable, I think, to the presence of the pitcher in the lineup. See what I mean?

Richie's broken bat reminded me that I was thinking the other day it might be good if the major leagues went to metal bats. These large, sharp pieces of wood flying around are dangerous. It's only a matter of time until someone gets seriously injured. I am a purist and I vastly prefer wood, but maybe it's time.

Kent continues to disappoint with RISP. This is getting old.

Giants 2, Angels 1
6:52:18 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Bottom of Fourth

Blogging the game and IMing with a couple of other fans in between gives baseball a whole new pace and meaning for me. This has been a really fun experience already.

Santiago has been so important behind the plate this year. We just saw another reason why. Most catchers miss that bouncer from Schmidt and we end up with the tying run in scoring position. Then he strikes the guy out on raw heat.

Now it looks to me like Schmidt is over-throwing a bit. Santiago needs to go out and settle him down. Or Rags does.

Benito to the mound. Good move. Nice ratio of 16 balls, 42 strikes for Schmidt now. You look for a ratio of 2:1 or better. He's almost at 3:1. Shows he has command.

Wow, did Spezio ever spank that one. Good play by Sanders keeps the run from scoring.

Molina's not normally dangerous but here's a case where if we were playing real baseball, we'd walk this guy and face the pitcher or force Scosia to make a pitching change. As it is, a situation that could be dramatic is routine.

Nice job of pitching by Schmidt to get out of trouble.

I think it's noteworthy that I haven't commented on the home plate ump yet. That's how it should be. He's doing a good job so he's invisible.

Giants 2, Angels 1
6:40:38 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Top of Fourth

One thing that feels right: this game won't end 2-1. There's so much power on the field tonight. This is going to be a wonderfully exciting, marvelously uplifting World Series. Just what the sport needs.

Kent grounds out. If there's a disappointment for the Giants this postseason, he's it. One RBI in 10+ games is just not acceptable.

Wow. Fanning Bonds in that spot was gutsy. Glad to see it. Keep pitching to him and he'll hit a few more out.

The replay showed that the second pitch to Sanders was in the identical place to the HR he hit earlier. Bet he wishes he had it back.

Wow, that move to first was ugly. And needless. Benito's not going anywhere. Bad running situation. Old legs. First baseman not even holding him on. What was he thinking?

Washburn still looks to me to be over-throwing.

Full count. Runners moving. Single could score two here. Come on, JT.

For a lot of the Angels fans, banging the Thunder Stix together is probably more exercise than they get all year. Heh heh

OK, JT, nice AB! Draws a key walk. Bases loaded for David Bell.

Oooooh. So close. I thought we'd see a three-way collision out there.

Giants 2, Angels 1
6:21:48 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Bottom of Third

Gee, Kennedy almost ties the game. What's up with him? He's practically a non-factor during the season.

One thing I like about the Angels and Scoscia is the way they don't always play the percentages. Bunting here is an intriguing call. I don't know why he called it. The difference between a runner at 2nd and a runner at 3rd isn't so great, although a sac fly is an RBI in the latter situation.

Wow, is the crowd ever loud. We have to take them out of this.

Nice AB by Eckstein. Pushing an inside pitch to the right is no easy feat. Hell, hitting an inside jammer isn't easy!

Dave Winer is also blogging the game!

Wow, Schmidt is smokin' this evening. 98 mph is fast, dude!

Giants 2, Angels 1
6:05:28 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Top of Third

Andy Reinhart of the Spartanburg, SC, Herald-Journal just piped in on AIM to tell me he's enjoying my blogging and my other game-related stuff. Is this cool or what?

Washburn's bouncer was funny. He forgot to let go. I've done that. Shinjo K's. No surprise there. This guy's just not very good.

Another bouncer. Wow. Washburn is over-pumped tonight. That could end up helping us.

Giants 2, Angels 1
5:55:07 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Bottom of Second

Hands GA a K. I love it! Fork ball. Wow. This guy's become amazing.

The Angels can play long ball, too. Nice one by Glaus. Mistake pitch by Schmidt.

One thing it's good to remember: the Angels battled from behind a LOT this postseason.

Buck says, "The tying run is on here for the Angels in the second." I hate the announcers that do this kind of stuff. Like we can't figure out that if the team is down by one and a guy gets on, the tying run is aboard.

That was a close play at second. Scoscia is a running fool; he'll send people in all kinds of situations. Could make things pretty interesting. I thought he was safe. So did McCarver. Oh, well. Those close ones are hard to call in real time. I've been there. He was in the right position. I hate it when an ump misses a call like that because he's out of position.

Giants 2, Angels 1
5:46:58 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Top of Second

Bonds will lead off. I'm excited just thinking about it. This guy changes so much about the game!

That fan's sign -- "Barry Who?" -- just shows her ignorance. Babe Ruth knows who Barry is.

Home run answers that question! Woohoo! "Baseball Royalty," says Mr. Buck.

Did you see the shrug and look on Washburn after the homer disappeared? Priceless.

And Sanders blows one out! He was due, man. Wow.

Angels pitchers hadn't allowed a HR in 49 innings until today. So much for that crap. I think we're setting a tone here, folks.

Good inning.

Giants 2, Angels 0
5:31:47 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Bottom of First

I love Tim McCarver as a color guy. His comment about outfielders cheating in a step with two strikes was one of those insightful things other commentators just overlook.

Nice job by Schmidt the ace.

Giants 0,. Angels 0
5:21:17 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Top of the First

I hate flyovers of military aircraft almost as much as I hate the DH. But nothing is going to detract from my enjoyment of this!

OK, here we go. First pitch: 5:07.

One thing I think will be helpful is if we can take Washburn deep in the count a lot, force him to throw a lot of pitches. Lofton did that even if he K'd.

Good move by Richie. Make Washburn show you can put the ball in the zone. But swinging at a pitch out of the zone on the second one showed tension, impatience.

Two K's by Washburn.

Giants 0, Angels coming to bat.
5:14:17 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

I Hate the DH

The DH rule sucks. It's always sucked. It takes too much managing strategy out of the game. It puts too much premium on the top arms and de-emphasizes the bullpen. It makes one player position special in a team sport where that just ought not be the case.

It's like if the NFL had a Designated Blocker who stepped into play for the QB or the kicker so the "stars" wouldn't have to get themselves dirty or bruised.
4:53:17 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

OK, I'm Blogging Game One of the World Series!

I'm going to try blogging the first game of the Series. We'll see if I can avoid getting so caught up in the action that I just forget to post my thoughts!

If you're blogging the game, too, let me know. Maybe we can create something like cross-blogging together. You can email me at or you can connect to me via IM. I'm alkaline420 on AIM and dshafer on Yahoo! Instant Messenger. (I have an ICQ account, too, but the data isn't where I am.)

I'm also interested in IM sessions with folks who are watching, whether or not you're blogging.

4:50:58 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Grokking the Aggregator...and Trying Replacements

I really like the News Aggregator built into Radio, which is what I use to create my Web log. But I don't understand something about it. Why is that I very often get duplicated feeds from the same site? I mean, there doesn't seem to be anything built into RSS feed technology that says, "Oh, don't send this subscriber that headline, because he's already seen it." I sometimes see the same story off some of these feeds six or eight or ten times a day. Seems inefficient on a number of levels.

Also, I don't see a way to tell the aggregator to kind of take a break and not update for a while or until I tell it. I can't get it to skip an hour or two here and there. That would be useful sometimes because here's what happens. I check the aggregator, uncheck the stories I want to pursue, start looking at them and then, at some point when I'm in the midst of that, an hour passes and a new batch of stuff appears, stuff I haven't yet seen. Now I have to filter once again. Maybe only a news junkie like me encounters this kind of stuff.

Anyway, I'm now playing with NetNewsWire Lite as a replacement for the Aggregator. It doesn't do the nifty automatic posting to my Weblog that Radio's tool does, but it seems to be a bit more manageable, less automagical.
3:18:42 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

My Take on the World Series

Well, the first World Series game of 2002 starts in less than 90 minutes. My beloved San Francisco Giants will take the field against a gritty, determined Anaheim Angels squad in a Disney-like atmosphere.

If you could remove the Bonds Factor, this Series would be a toss-up. In fact, the Angels might have a slight edge by virtue of being the home team and thus having the advantage of four home games if the Series goes seven. But you can't eliminate the Bonds Factor. I think Bonds will make the difference in this Series even if he walks every time he comes to bat. How?

Read my story on the subject and let me know if you disagree.
2:57:30 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

More Wrangling Over MacWorld Expo and Apple?

I commented a couple of days ago on the brouhaha between Apple Computer and the folks who run MacWorld Expo over the latter's decision to take the show out of NYC and back to Boston (apple macworld).

Now it appears that the MacWorld folks are going to try to coerce Apple into supporting their conference.

Sheesh. If this isn't a mutually beneficial arrangement that works to the ultimate value of Apple's customers, who gives a shit?
2:15:22 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Kuro5hin: Good Piece on Software Complexity

Kuro5hin today has a piece by lesu II on the virtues of simplicity in software.

This dovetailed with a conversation I had yesterday at Jim Cashel's invitation-only online community summit up in Sonoma, CA. There seems to me to be a good deal of sentiment brewing out there for simple, focused, usable applications that do one thing or a very restricted subset of things excruciatingly well...and then connect neatly and as transparently as possible to other apps that do related things equally well.

I'm not sure this componentware thing will catch on or become what I'd characterize yet as a "trend," but it's awfully interesting to me that by "coincidence" (a notion in which I personally don't believe), I'm hearing hte same messages from several quarters in a short period of time.

At the very least, the Universe is having fun teasing with me about it.
2:10:04 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

More from Udell: Deep Thinking

Particularly on weekends when the phone isn't ringing, the pace of life slows down just a little and I allow myself more time to read and reflect, I enjoy stumbling serendipitously across the likes of this essay by Jon Udell modestly entitled "The atomic, subatomic and galactic structure of things today."

The more I read of his, the more I'm certain I'd enjoy meeting him and getting to know him better. I am visioning that happening.
2:02:43 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

Google News Lacks Context

Jon Udell writes about Google News and why its lack of context is an issue. I hadn't thought about it before reading Jon's blog entry but he's right. And I think this represents a huge opportunity for Google (or some other news aggregator perhaps?) to bring this news-gathering experience to the next level.

I'm egerly awaiting someone to do that.
1:57:10 PM    Add your viewpoint [ comments so far]

© Copyright 2002 Dan Shafer.

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