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The Matt Cain Effect

If the Padres can win 4 games out of their last 5, they can guarantee their playoff spot. I wonder how long the "Matt Cain Effect" will last. I always like looking at the win probability graph after the fact:

Here's the thing. I hate when dudes get cocky after hitting home runs, especially when their home run actually only puts them 3 runs behind as opposed to 4. It's very self serving, though I guess there was talk that Cain was staring down players as he struck them out. So maybe there was some justification in the big bat flip and it's not like Hairston pulled a Barry Bonds and walked to second base and asked for a sip of water before walking the rest of the way home. Those are annoying home runs, those Barry Bonds ones.

That being said, if you're a pitcher and you feel you got shown up, there's a right way and a wrong way to deal with that sort of thing and the wrong way is start acting like a little bitch.

If Matt Cain plunks Hairston in that next at bat... touche.

If Matt Cain strikes Hairston out and just takes his normal around the horn walk around the mound... touche.

What nobody wants to see, and what will fire up the other team, is when Matt Cain strikes the dude out, stares him down, makes gay little waving motions from the mound, makes gay little waving motions from the dugout. That's what we in the business call "a dick move".

Seriously, what's that going to do? You're playing a team that's emotionally and physically spent. You're beating them by a couple of runs late and you're about to play spoiler and you decide to wake them up because one dude called you out for staring down his team.

It's not often that you can thank a dude when he acts like a little prick, but I suppose the Padres can thank Matt Cain. I hope the Padres look at tonight's game and say, "Look. We're beaten down. A lot of crappy stuff has happened these last several games, but f_ck the Giants if they think we're going to let them have any more part in spoiling whatever postseason chances we have."

I always want the Padres to win, but I'd especially like one tonight. And in the postgame interview, when they ask the Padres if Matt Cain had anything to do with them getting fired up, I want the Padres to reply with, "Matt who?"