Do you remember how sad you were at this time last night? Do you? You should. Think about it. Hyun-jin Ryu lasted one terrible inning, then left, injured. You had to suffer through Chris Perez, Carlos Frias and Kevin Correia. The offense couldn’t touch Madison Bumgarner. It was, all around, awful. The season had crumbled, some said. The Dodgers had shown no heart, cried others.
This was better. This was so much better. And it was so much better right from the start, too. With one out in the first, Yasiel Puig doubled — he’s been on base six times in the last two games, so yeah, let’s maybe not bench him — and then after an out, so did Matt Kemp, and so did Hanley Ramirez. Then Carl Crawford singled, and Juan Uribe, and A.J. Ellis. By the end of the first inning, the only inning the Giants would entrust Tim Hudson with, the Dodgers were up 4-0… and we were just barely getting started.
Wait, hang on. We’ll get to more offense in a second. There’s so much more fun to come. First, in the bottom of the initial inning, and thanks to Chad, here’s Kemp giving exactly no F’s while blowing a bubble and gunning down Angel Pagan at home:
Tim Lincecum, playing the role of Chris Perez in “formerly productive reliever with a drug history comes in to relieve quality starter after just a single inning,” came in for the second to try to patch things up. He did! Except for all of the ways he did not, allowing four more in the second, another in the third, and Juan Uribe‘s homer in the fourth. It was 11-0 by that point. We’re not close to being done. Of course, all the runs in the world can’t make the lead-footed Adrian Gonzalez any faster running the bases. Kemp made sure he didn’t forget:
We’re still only in the fourth inning. There’s so much more: Zack Greinke, who pitched a very effective six scoreless innings that no one will ever remember, followed his fourth-inning double with a sixth-inning homer. Do not overlook that. ZACK GREINKE, ALREADY PITCHING A SHUTOUT AND UP 11-0, HOMERED. I have absolutely no idea why he was still in the game at that point, really. It doesn’t matter. That was about the point when it stopped being “ha, this is a hilarious blowout at a baseball game” and turned into “oh, this is going to be one of those nights you talk about decades from now, got it.” Then the Dodgers scored twice more that inning. Then Scott Van Slyke hit an absolute no-doubt blast to left in the seventh off Brett Bochy, who, yes, is the son of Giants manager Bruce Bochy. 17. 17 runs. Seven. Teen. Runs.
Here’s how awesome/ridiculous/insane/awesome this game was, and there’s still like four more reasons why: Don Mattingly came out to challenge an incorrect out call with his team up 13-0 in the sixth. Think about that for a second, won’t you? Not that he shouldn’t have — Crawford was clearly safe, of course, and the call was overturned — but that’s a man who (rightfully) wants every last run that belongs to him. Or, less likely, it’s because Crawford had been hitting with the bases loaded and Mattingly wanted to quiet everyone who won’t stop complaining about the team’s issues there.
There’s more: Joc Pederson scored his first major league run when Uribe followed Crawford with a bases loaded walk, and walked twice himself. Giants fans are displeased. Erisbel Arruebarrena picked up his first major league error in the eighth, on a fly to left that he had no business going after. Roger Bernadina batted twice and was hit twice. Alex Guerrero finally got to use his glove in a big league game, and it was in left field. We saw Scott Elbert pitch for the first time in more than two years, and he got through a scoreless inning. Even Perez got through a scoreless inning, as did Yimi Garcia to finish it out. Andre Ethier didn’t appear, because Andre Ethier does not exist.
By the top of the eighth, this is what the Dodgers lineup looked like:
#Dodgers lineup (right now): Gordon 2B Elbert P Van Slyke 1B Pederson CF Arruebarrena SS Guerrero LF Rojas 3B Federowicz C Bernadina RF
— J.P. Hoornstra (@jphoornstra) September 14, 2014
Eight different Dodgers had more than one hit, led by Ramirez’ four. The 24 hits were the most they’d had since putting up a Los Angeles record 25 in Minnesota in 2011, in a game I oddly remember as featuring a huge day from Trent Oeltjen, for some reason. This is now a new record for biggest shutout against the Giants, topping a 12-0 game from April of 1940. This was great. This was everything.
I know that earlier today I cautioned against getting too down over last night’s big loss, saying that a 9-0 loss doesn’t count in the standings any more than a 1-0 loss or a 15-0 loss. That being the case, we should probably remember that on the other side. Nothing that happened tonight means that the Giants can’t light up Clayton Kershaw tomorrow night.
But man, did this one feel good. Remember this one. Hang on to it. Keep it in a special place for when it’s cold this winter and you’re lonely. This game will warm your heart. 17 runs of insanity against the biggest historical rival the team will ever have, well, that’ll do that.