Beyond the fact that we survived Barry Bonds taking umbrage at uppity bloggers, endured a horrifying error by poor frazzled David Wright, thought Brian Bannister's leg might actually fall off, and then walked away realizing that hey, we took two of three from the Giants to finish the first leg of California Tour '06 at a we'll-take-it 4-3, consider this: We won a game on Getaway Day at Phone Company Park.
Whether it was the small bit of the game I caught between duties at work or the smaller bits I caught on the radio when snarled lower Manhattan subways allowed (which wasn't often) or the tense parts I saw in the mirror or by craning my neck at our beloved Waterfront Ale House during dinner with Emily and Joshua or the last moments I heard on the radio again walking home, I felt like I should have my hands clamped over my eyes, with maybe a sixteenth of an inch of space reserved for peeks out. Getaway Day in San Francisco, I kept thinking with a shiver. Bad things, man.
But c'mon, was my paranoia really justified?
Well, yes. I checked. Beyond our horrible overall record at Phone Company Park, consider this chronicle of Getaway Days gone awry:
May 4, 2000: Not a good start. We were up 2-1 in the eighth when all hell broke loose. Walk. Single. Strikeout. Single ties it. Exit Rick Reed, enter Dennis Cook. Balk. Hit batsman. (Marvin Benard, whom Cook felt compelled to call a “fucking midget,” sparking a near-brawl.) Exit Cook, enter Armando Benitez. Oh goody. Triple. Pop-out. (Bonds, somehow.) Home run. We lose 7-2 to complete a Giants four-game sweep.
May 13, 2001: We manage four hits against the immortal Chad Zerbe, lose 6-3 to complete a Giants' three-game sweep.
August 22, 2002: We lose 3-1, completing a (wait for it) Giants' three-game sweep.
May 18, 2003: Holy cow, we win! 5-1 behind Glavine for a four-game split. On the other hand, this is the series in which Piazza tore his groin, ushering in the then-exciting, now faintly ridiculous Jason Phillips era.
August 22, 2004: August 21 was the great Barry Bonds game recently extolled by my partner. August 22 wasn't. It was a 3-1 loss behind Matt Ginter. Giants took two out of three.
August 28, 2005: This was the West Coast trip we opened by shellacking Arizona four straight, then continued against the Giants with Steve Trachsel returning for a 1-0 win. We dropped the second game but thought, Hey, can't win 'em all. On Getaway Day we took a 1-0 lead in the sixth, after which Kris Benson gave up home runs to J.T. Snow and Pedro Feliz. We lost the rubber game, went home, and beat the Phillies two days later, not knowing it was the high point of the season.
So. Nice win. Put some ice on Bannister's leg, put soothing music on Wright's iPod, and let's get out of town before further annoying Barry Bonds or otherwise tempting fate. We've escaped the house of horrors! And with a win! How cool is that?
Say, fellas…where are we going next?