I usually strongly disapprove of referring to one's favorite team as "we", as if the fan had anything to do with anything, but today I'm waiving that disapproval, given how agonizing it was to follow this game. There was to begin with a secret dread that it was all going to come apart, that yesterday's eight run bullpen fiasco was the beginning of a horrendous losing streak that would consume the Dodger's division lead within a week. Even now, with the Dodgers up 4 games ( pending the result of tonight's Snakes game ) it is troubling to think that it could all be gone in just four days. The action of the game just fed into the worry that we really were entering the beginning of the end, since the bullpen so often seemed on the verge of another meltdown from the sixth inning on.
My own journey with the Dodgers today began with GameDay, then turned to TV when I went home for lunch, then finished up with radio when I came back to work. So I got to see Martin's tag at the plate on the comebacker crisis play. Comebackers to the pitcher with a runner on first with less than two outs always make me nervous, because it seems like it should be such an easy double play and yet the throw away into center field is a very real danger with the pitcher having to make a full turn to make the throw to second. The comebacker in the ninth was plenty stressful enough already; I didn't need a crazy one an inning later that would fail in a way I had never anticipated only to then be saved miraculously. I am glad I got to see it, though. Those kinds of plays are part of what makes watching baseball so fun.
The game ended with Rick Monday describing the final batted ball as a line drive. Other accounts have it as a pop up. But no, Monday had to make me think the Pirates had just hit a game winning single before clarifying that Blake DeWitt had been able to range back and catch this "line drive" for the final out. I'm sure the ball wasn't a true pop up but I can't imagine it was anything like a line drive given where it was caught. Thank you Rick for making me lose the game on the inside before delivering the good news. The Dodgers may be 4 games up right now but my heart is about 2 games back of steady thanks to this game.