Watching Jeff DaVanon

Watching Jeff DaVanon

A weblog devoted to #55 of the Anaheim Angels, Jeff DaVanon. How is he doing? Is he getting his due respect yet? Let's watch and see...

Saturday, June 18, 2005

boredom punctuated by moments

Sometime around the sixth inning I was feeling pretty bored. In fact, I was starting to mentally write the post I would make about the game, and I wasn't sure how to make my boredom worth writing about. I sadly thought of the other things I could have spent these hours of my life doing. I wished I had brought a book. I tried to muster enthusiasm over Vlad having changed from his new amazing red shoes back to his old normal shoes sometime in the middle of the game.

I was thinking that everyone was bored. The energy seemed off. Even the players seemed to be going through the motions, waiting for that moment when something would happen and they could feel invested in the game. In the stands, we endured the world's longest crowd wave, and that was the most exciting thing we had going on.

The problem was that exciting things had happened to lead off the game, and we weren't prepared for it. Most people weren't even in their seats yet. We were caught unawares, hadn't yet given ourselves over to the ebb and enthusiasm of the game. Figgins and Kennedy turned a kick-ass doubleplay and then Figgins followed that up with a home-run. And we were happy and shouting and stuff, but we weren't really ready to be all enthusiastic.

And then it got boring. Or maybe it was just me. My husband tried to tell me it was a pitching battle, but I didn't feel like it was. People were getting hits, it just wasn't leading to anything. Every bit of progress got shut-down quickly. The air itself was conspiring against drama, keeping balls from soaring, turning homeruns into long outs, chilling any enthusiasm we mustered.

Later on, Donnelly made an appearance, and we showed our support. We couldn't quite feel supportive enough to go for an all-out ovation, but we applauded. Donnelly has a new, very deliberate pre-pitch routine. He carefully circles the mound, stops before stepping on the dirt, makes sure he has done whatever he needs to do, and then steps on. He pitched a flawless inning, and we probably would have given a real ovation had the final out of the inning not been so attention-getting.

Then we got a string of people on base. And I wondered why I ever felt bored. And then we tied the game! Oh my god! And Jeff was in!

And we watched more Rally Monkey clips that have sexual undertones. (is anyone else as disturbed by those as I am? Especially the Palmer video one where the monkey head is superimposed on hot chicks with jiggling breasts? We're starting to quietly refer to it as the beastiality monkey.)

It seems like we should have been able to win in the bottom of the ninth, but it wasn't to be, and we pressed on to the tenth. Still nothing.

And then, with the crowd on it's feet, and 2 runners on-base, Jeff comes up and works to a full count, fouling off pitch after pitch. He's so hungry for a hit he isn't going to let this at-bat pass him by, he's fighting for it. And then he gets a pitch he likes and drives one past the infield, Vlad scores, Angels' win. Finley jogs to second from first, but as soon as Vlad scores he turns around to be the first to congratulate Jeff, meeting up with him between first and second, all smiles.

The really nice thing about baseball is that almost everyone gets to be a hero during the course of a season, and this was Jeff's night.

And as Jeff himself admits that with the way he's been hitting lately, he needed to be a hero, needed to pull through in the clutch for his team.

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