Urban: First place is Giants' only salvation

August 9, 2011, 5:33 am
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Aug. 8, 2011


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Mychael Urban

SAN FRANCISCO -- With the Pirates coming into town riding a 10-game losing streak, there were two schools of thought among Giants fans.The glass-half-full set, of course, looked at Sunday's victory over the Phillies and figured, Sweet, the boys are about to break out and beat up on the weak part of the schedule. The glass-half-empty set? The Pirates are due.Pirates 5, Giants 0.So is the glass half-empty or half-full? Insanely enough, you can still make a case for both.
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Half-full, mostly because the Diamondbacks absolutely refuse to take advantage of the Giants' generosity. When Tuesday dawns, San Francisco will again be perched atop the National League West standings, alone, despite having lost 12 of 18 games.Half-empty because, well, it's pretty damned bleak right now. Charlie Morton, bless his heart, is no Cliff Lee. Heck, he's not even close to a Vance Worley.Against these Giants, these days, he's even better. He's Orel Hershiser in his prime, rolling harmless grounder after harmless grounder.Half-full? Aside from the standings, there isn't much to support that stance. Sure, you squint and look at Aubrey Huff and Cody Ross and Andres Torres and kinda-sorta see, in your mind's eye, a blurry vision of 2010, back when these guys did some hitting of consequence. You know they have it in them. You've seen them do it before.But you haven't seen them do it in a long time, and the longer you squint, the more your eyes burn.
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Half-empty? That's easy. Look no further than the numbers with runners in scoring position. Past 18 games: 20-for-125 (.160), including 0-for-10 on Monday.Hard to score when you can't drive 'em in from scoring position, and what happens when you remove the "S" from the RISP acronym?You get RIP.
The glass isn't half empty. It's on its side in a graveyard, dying a slow, painful death while the Diamondbacks desperately search for a shovel.

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