Johnny Giavotella doesn't care, dude. He doesn't care that he never really stuck in Kansas City, a team that is now one of the AL's premium organizations. Johnny Giavotella doesn't care that he was a afterthought when coming into the Halos' spring training, a blip on the radar to make the squad let alone be the starting second baseman. Johnny Giavotella apparently doesn't even care about waking up one day and seeing double vision, then being diagnosed with fourth nerve palsy.
Perhaps "care" is the wrong word, but the fact remains that Johnny Giavotella has had a laundry list of hurdles to overcome just to get to this spot, where he's the living, breathing embodiment of "clutch" and "spark" on the Angels, and he's sat each and every one of those hurdles down, looked them in the eye and said "I don't give a f***". There is no player in the MLB that is more DGAF than Giavotella right now, and it's making an entire fanbase tell their fantasy crush Mike Trout that they may be fantasy cheating on him with fantasy Johnny G.
The entire season, going back to March in Arizona, has been a test, and he is diminutive and inconspicuous but he is also indomitable. If there was anything that could have slowed him down, it would have been the serious eye trouble he found himself in for over a month.
"I was in bad shape the first week or two after this incident happened," Giavotella said Monday. "So for me to be in this position now is pretty incredible."
Nothing seems to be too incredible or out-of-the-norm for this guy to overcome, so it was with little surprise that as soon as he was inserted back into the lineup, he not only got right back to shredding opposition with his glove and legs, but his injection of adrenaline and kid-like joy to the team had the Angels jolted to life like Uma Thurman coming out of an OD in Pulp Fiction.
And just like that, he was right where he left off: not giving a damn about anything other than playing baseball and winning. Sometimes his game can be risky, with his propensity to be overzealous on the base paths or trying to do too much with his glove. But since he's been back, that reckless aplomb has translated into game-changing plays and excitement.
Here's a prime example of DGAFotella in action:
There is really no way that should have been a double. Even in watching it again, you're thinking "NOOOOO, stay at first!". But Johnny hears you, puts on his DGAF after burners and legs out a filthy, insane double. Mike Scioscia said of this play "We never know where Johnny is going to end up." That's coach speak for "Yeah, that pissed me off but it was also so awesome that I am not only going to let it slide, but I'm going to buy him a beer or six after this presser." Kole Calhoun was a little more honest and up front about it when he said "I told him I was gonna kill him if he was out, but since he was safe, that was a great play," Calhoun said. "He's always gonna push the envelope, and it paid off and won us the game."
Since coming back from the fourth nerve palsy scare, we've seen a guy that would be right at home in the fiery, powerful and workman-like team from 2002; guts, grit and just about any other vague superlative you can apply, and yes...ughhh...scrappy. But what can you say when he's flashing leather like it's nobody's business, while also getting huge, momentum-swinging hits(Giavotella has had an insane FOUR extra-base hits in his four games back)? He's burned us all before with that level of DGAF, but when it's clicking, it's a recipe for exciting victories and fist-pumping glee.
How can you not see this dude running out a triple, and instead of just some ho-hum-whatever slide, he literally flies through air horizontally, arms and legs akimbo; put a suit on him and add a couple guns in his hands, some slow-mo and you'd have a shot right out of the climax to an early 90's John Woo film .
This is exactly what the Angels needed, at exactly the right time. Mike Trout can handle the locked in focus and pure baseball talent portion of their unlikely playoff run, and Johnny Giavotella can be your DGAF wild card, that pulls double duty of making things happen on the field, and making things happen in the hearts of every fan watching. Of all the people you'd think would be such a difference maker this year, you would have probably never guessed it'd be Little Italy AKA Johnny Drama AKA The Flying Cannoli AKA The Entertainer AKA Johnny Giavotella. Giavotella himself knows that nobody thought he'd be doing this. He just doesn't give a fuck.