This post serves a few purposes. First, here’s your “It’s the End of the Year So Let’s Review…” post, to go along with all the “Top 10 _______” you’ll be seeing on TV and all over the internet over the next week. It’s also, I suppose, a Christmas gift for loyal readers. Finally, it’s the last thing I’ll post in 2012. I’m headed on vacation and out of the country for a couple of weeks, so the blog will be silent unless something huuuuuge happens and somebody needs to step in. We’ll get back to business in January as we start counting down to spring training.
To wrap up 2012, I’m turning to the Giants themselves (and a few others). Here’s the championship season in their words. Happy holidays, everyone.
“That’s one of those games that saves your sanity,” Bruce Bochy after Angel Pagan’s homer kept the Giants from getting swept in Cincinnati in April.
“ASG election of ‘Kung Fu Panda’ shows the value of a cute nickname. Surprised Giants fans didn’t elect a ‘ball dude,’ ” Mets GM Sandy Alderson on Twitter. Sandoval hit a three-run triple in the National League’s victory.
“They did such a great job of representing the Giants,” Bochy, on his four All-Stars.
“A 100-game suspension for taking a children’s cough medicine that contains trace amounts of a prohibited substance, which is what happened here, is severe and unfair and does not reflect the intention of the Joint Drug Prevention and Treatment Program,” statement from Guillermo Mota’s agent after Mota tested positive for Clenbuterol.
“We’re pretty beat up right now. We’re just sustaining blow after blow,” Barry Zito, after the team lostMota on the heels of losing Brian Wilson, Jeremy Affeldt and Pablo Sandoval to injuries.
“You see the lineup we have and I don’t see any reason why we can’t keep doing this,” Marco Scutaro, after the Giants started crushing the ball on the road when they visited Coors Field in August.“We deserve it,” Gregor Blanco, a day before the Giants clinched the West.
“Beat L.A., that’s what they say. We want to knock them out,” Pagan, a night before the Giants eliminated the Dodgers from the Wild Card race.
“Everything you’ve got for the man beside you,” the message written on the visiting clubhouse’s dry-erase board in Cincinnati.
“Same clothes tomorrow!” Tim Lincecum after the Giants won Game 4 of the NLDS.
“We’re 27 outs from being in the World Series. For me, that’s priceless,” Scutaro, after Game 6 of the NLCS.
“We bought into something you don’t see very often. We bought into playing for each other and loving each other,” Hunter Pence, after winning the World Series.
“BA-RRY! BA-RRY! BA-RRY!” — The chant when the World Series trophy was brought into the winning clubhouse.
“I’m just glad the whole world got to see what this team is about. Starting with Game 5 of the NLCS, we played our best baseball of the season. I always knew we were capable of this,” Ryan Vogelsong, after the World Series.“The first time through the lineup, I felt like something could happen,” Matt Cain after his perfect game.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen a right fielder catch a ball there,” Bochy on Blanco’s catch.
“I was thinking about it. But I thought we might need him to play first base. I definitely gave him a look that probably scared him a little. I gave him the evil eye,” Vogelsong, on seeing Brandon Belt sitting in Cain’s spot during the perfect game.
“You goofball. Some of the things he does…That’s Belt. It was priceless,” Cain, on his thoughts upon seeing Belt sitting in his spot during the perfect game.
“He’s one of the best arms in the game. I’m lucky I get to work with him every fifth day. Stay up late and watch him whenever you can,” Buster Posey on the lack of attention Cain gets from national writers.
“Yeah, they’re playing (the perfect game highlights) on the scoreboard every game,” Posey, when asked in July if during games he ever thought about Cain’s perfect game.
“Wow. It’s hard to describe the job he’s done…I’d hate to think of where we would be without him,” Bochy, talking about Melky Cabrera in May.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen this before. To see what he has been able to do, it’s amazing. It’s real. It’s not just one day. Melky, THAT is what’s up. He’s a beast, he really is,” Sergio Romo, talking about Cabrera in May.
“It’s a joke. He’s hitting line drives, line drives, line drives … everybody is asking him how he’s doing it,” Blanco, talking about Cabrera in May.
“I like winning,” Cabrera, when asked about the season’s first half.
“I accept my suspension under the Joint Drug Program. And I will try to move on with my life.” – Cabrera’s statement after getting suspended.
“If you had told me we could lose Wilson and Panda twice and Mota, now lose Cabrera… We’ve got a survival instinct, seemingly. It’s a good group, they’ve got enough character,” Brian Sabean, after Cabrera’s suspension.
“We believe in what we have here,” Pagan, after the suspension.
“We’ve moved on and so we’re going to move forward without Melky. Melky understands,” Bochy, announcing that Cabrera would not return in the postseason.
“You have two veteran players that should know better and evidently don’t,” Sabean, on Cabrera and Mota.“That was incredible. I gave him a golf clap,” Lincecum, describing a diving play from Crawford.
“I get my money’s worth,” Brandon Crawford, on having two grand slams and two three-run homers among his six career homers.
“I’ll have to keep an eye on my left fielder. Make sure he’s watching the game,” Bochy, discussing the nightclub behind left field in the Marlins’ new park.
“I was actually separating frozen hamburgers and I slipped on the floor,” Jeremy Affeldt, after injuring his knee when his son jumped into his arms.
“Yeah, but he still has to go home and cook, so…” Bochy, giving a health update on Affeldt during the World Series.
“Sure – if you like perfection,” Brian Wilson, when asked if the media could watch his first post-surgery throwing session.
“Nobody tells you that you have to not like the Dodgers. But it kind of rubs off on you,” Vogelsong, after beating Clayton Kershaw for the second time.
“There was a little anger behind that throw – I had just grounded out to the pitcher,” Crawford after making a slick diving stop and strong throw to first.
“I just swing hard in case I accidentally hit something,” Madison Bumgarner after hitting his first career homer.
“If he ever gets a hit off of me, I’ll take my uniform top off, walk off the mound and retire,” Affeldt after Santiago Casilla’s single.
“A sense of dismay is a good way to put it, I guess,” Posey, on getting hung out to dry on a failed squeeze play.
“I could catch. All I need is a chest protector, and I can hide behind it and stick a glove out,” Lincecum, after the Giants nearly ran out of position players in Atlanta.
“I told my wife there’s something to it. She’s like, ‘I don’t care. Find another way to make this happen,’ “ Affeldt, who has reached the World Series in all three seasons during which his wife gave birth to a son.
“It’s just different,” Don Mattingly, complimenting the AT&T Park crowds.
“I tried Twitter a couple of years ago and it was a pretty devastating experience for me. I learned not to check the inbox. So I got off Twitter. But I’m excited that the fans are fired up,” Zito, on #RallyZito.
“The enchiladas were good … They’re always good,” Vogelsong, on the #RallyEnchiladas
“Sweet! Let the people eat!” Pence, when he found out that Giants stolen bases were getting free tacos for America.
“I just look illegal.” — Romo’s parade shirt.
“I’m known for my Arabian horse gallop,” Zito, on his NLCS bunt.
“He’s put some weight back on and looked healthy. The beard didn’t look healthy, but he did,” Bochy on Wilson, who returned to the team for the postseason.
“It’s really exciting. I’m going to try and pull Andre Dawson out of the ivy,” Illinois native George Kontos, on playing at Wrigley Field.
”I’m sick, unprepared and have a semi-tight hamstring. And I’m still faster than Huff,” Crawford, after pinch-running for Huff the day after the Giants clinched.
“I might kick his ass,” Scutaro, when asked what he would do if he saw Matt Holliday.
“Did I make it?” Brandon Belt to a huddled group of reporters who had just been given a copy of the NLDS roster.
“I want 15 years, three thousand-million dollars. How do you like me now?” Scutaro, when asked what he was looking for in a new deal.
“I’m not saying I’m a newborn deer, but you are learning your body again,” Lincecum, on adjustments he had to make after dropping last year’s extra bulk.
“We think the best thing is to let him fight through this,” Bochy, talking about Lincecum in June.
“You never want to say I’ve hit rock bottom or anything like that, but when things are going as bad as they are right now you’ve got to go out there with the feeling like you’ve got nothing left to lose. I have to erase this, obviously remember it and use it to know what I don’t want to go through again. It’s been terrible. It’s a terrible feeling. When you’re the weakest link, that wears on you,” Lincecum, at the end of a disappointing first half.
“I’m not going to be the guy throwing a tantrum because I’m not getting what I want,” Lincecum, after being moved to the bullpen for the postseason.
“Man, that was 2010 Timmy,” Affeldt, after one of Lincecum’s electrifying postseason relief outings.
“The second we got that ring, it’s like that taste for that next ring is just sitting right in your mouth the whole time … Oh, that sounds terrible. Let me rephrase that,” Lincecum, after Game 3 of the World Series.
“You’ve got to cart me off the field. That’s the mentality I take. I’m ready to rock, regardless of whether I feel good or not. I get paid to play. You don’t feel like you’re earning your paycheck unless you’re out there on the field, performing and contributing,” Romo, after taking the field in June with braces on both knees.
“I didn’t do anything. I got an out,” Romo, when reporters asked him why he bent down with apparent knee pain after clinching a save.
“He’s a very unselfish player. There are times when he thanks you for trusting him to help the team win,” Bochy on Romo, his postseason closer.
“The guy’s got some stones. He’s got some big stones. There’s not much more you can say other than that,” Kontos, on Romo’s NLDS Game 5 performance.
“Look at my teammates. Look how happy they are,” Romo after Game 5 of the NLDS.
“The three games against the Dodgers weren’t pretty and we kind of took that personally. We were hoping we could infuse something from the outside like they did,” Sabean, after trading for Hunter Pence.
“I have to be honest, every now and then, I do things you don’t see very often,” Pence, on his first day as a Giant.
“Hopefully, you guys caught me on the ‘up.’ We’ll see … to be determined,” Pence, on his first day as a Giant.
“I’ve been getting this one quite a bit. The truth is, I didn’t know (my warm-up swing) looked like that until they filmed me and it was disturbing,” Pence.
“The only thing better than hits is more hits,” Pence.
“I name all my bats. Whatever word comes to mind, I write it on them. He will always be Fryer to me,” Pence, discussing his bats after the NLCS.
“He gets so amped up and starts bouncing around. He could start mumbling and it wouldn’t matter,” Affeldt, on Pence’s pregame speeches.
“Absolutely, he’s the MVP,” Pence, on Posey.
“We’ve all got a certain number of years to play this game, and obviously last year I saw how quickly it can all be gone. You’ve got to take advantage of each moment you have,” Posey, after making the All-Star team.
“That’s one of the best at-bats I’ve ever had off of me. I threw him at least five put-away pitches, I thought. And he just kept fouling them off. I make one mistake and it’s a homer,” Joe Blanton, after Posey fouled off six straight pitches and then hit a homer during a September game.
“I could see the seam marks on his Adam’s apple. He’s a tough son of a gun. If I was hit in the throat while I was catching, I’d probably be lying on the trainer’s table,” Vogelsong, after his bounced pitch hit Posey in the throat.
“Wow, I’m humbled that Hank Aaron knows who I am,” Posey, when given the Hank Aaron Award before Game 3 of the World Series.
“I can’t think of a guy more valuable for a club than Buster is for us,” Bochy.
“Growing up a Giants fan, this is just a dream come true. This is always where I wanted to be and how I imagined it,” Crawford, on the Giants clinching a postseason spot.
“These guys come out with their slingshots and rocks and they’re going to fight you. These guys just believe.” Tim Flannery, in the middle of the postseason run.
“I’ve been waiting for this moment a long time,” Vogelsong, after his first career postseason start.
“I’m not ready to book my flight to Puerto Rico,” Pagan, after Game 3 of the NLDS.
“I didn’t want to let these guys down. I didn’t want to let the city down,” Vogelsong, after winning Game 6 of the NLCS.
“It was surreal. It never rains like that here. That was the perfect amount of drama on top of drama. The night ended magically,” Zito, on the Game 7 storm.
“It was weird – but I was happy. I’ve had a lot of weird broken-bat hits but that ranks up there. You know, it’s baseball, you can’t explain if even if you play,” Pence, on his triple-double.
“I still can’t believe it. I don’t try to hit home runs. I’m not trying to do too much right now, especially at this time of the season,” Sandoval, after his three-homer game.
“I got punched in the mouth and I don’t even care,” Vogelsong, after winning the World Series.
“You can’t hurt steel. You can’t hurt steel, baby. This group was too special to take down,” Pagan, after winning the World Series.
“I was looking slider,” Miguel Cabrera.