San Francisco Giant Aaron Rowand Reaches End of the Line
The Giants lost 3-2 to the Padres Friday night in a battle of supremacy for the NL West.
Jonathan Sanchez's prediction was proven wrong, his attempt at becoming a baseball mystic falling short.
But losing the game and the prediction will not be what this game is remembered for in the coming weeks, months, and years.
Tonight was the official death of Aaron Rowand as a San Francisco Giant.
His year long struggles, the burden of his inflated contract, and most importantly the arrival of Jose Guillen have ended this story once and for all.
While Rowand can't be blamed for the loss of this game singlehandedly—teams surely win and lose games—he nevertheless led the charge as if blind and retarded, a Hellen Keller-Wiliam Hung type performance for the ages.
It began in the second inning when with a runner on first base, Chase Headly hit a fly ball to deep center.
Rowand huffed and puffed to get back, but fell about two steps short as the ball landed over his head, bounced near the warning track, then ricocheted off the wall.
Andres Torres catches that ball 10 times out of 10. It hung up in the air for a good while. It was not a pure line drive.
Should Aaron Rowand start another game this year?
A third of the center fielders in MLB would have caught that ball: the speedy ones.
But on this night of death, the ball sailed over Rowand's head, and to add insult to injury he tripped over his own feet and fell on his ass, ensuring no play as Headley trotted into third base standing up.
The only odd thing, actually, is that in all of Bochy's mixing and matching I've never heard any writer or announcer point out how much is lost when Torres moves to left or right for Rowand to play center.
Tonight, it may well be that a game was lost. Instead of Headley harmlessly flying out, the play was an RBI triple. Scott Hairston then hit a sac fly and the game was tied at two.
Nail one in the coffin.
Rowand doubled downed in the bottom of the same inning by getting caught stealing with one out and runners on first and second.
Inexplicably, he tried to steal third before pitcher Clayton Richard even got the sign from catcher Yorvit Torrealba. Richard said thank you and tossed to third for a quick run down (pictured).
Perhaps Rowand forgot what month it is, and decided San Diego deserved a nicely wrapped Christmas gift.
Nail two in the coffin.
In the fourth inning, Rowand grounded out. In the eighth inning, he struck out.
And as if scripted in a mausoleum, Rowand recorded the final out of the game by striking out against Heath Bell.
Nail three in the coffin.
Jose Guillen's plane landed at about 10 p.m Pacific Time.
The fourth and final nail in the coffin.
Unfortunately, Rowand is a great guy, the ultimate gamer, and has an impeccable reputation.
Thus, this passing is sad one.
If this were K-Rod's obituary, there wouldn't even be a story here.
In any event, Rest in Peace Aaron Rowand.
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