Thearon W. Henderson
Madison Bumgarner tames the Tigers by tossing 7 shutout innings, Giants manufacture 2 late runs and take a 2-0 series stranglehold.
|Final - 10.25.2012||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|San Francisco Giants||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||1||X||2||5||0|
|WP: Madison Bumgarner (1 - 0)
SV: Sergio Romo (1)
LP: Doug Fister (0 - 1)
The Detroit Tigers offense was missing in action for the second consecutive game, Madison Bumgarner pitching 7 shutout innings in winning a pitcher's duel over Doug Fister in a 2-0 San Francisco Giants victory. The Giants hold a 2-0 lead in the World Series with the next 3 games scheduled for Detroit this weekend.
Bumgarner allowed just 2 hits in his 7 shutout innings, receiving credit for his first win of the 2012 post season. Sergio Romo pitched a 1-2-3 9th for the save. Despite being hit in the head by a line drive in the 2nd inning, Fister matched Bumgarner pitch fior pitch and deserved better. The Tigers' number 2 took the loss despite allowing only 1 run and 4 hits while pitching into the 7th.
The 2 Giants runs scored on a Brandon Crawford double play ball and a Hunter Pence sacrifice fly. The only Tigers only scoring threat ended when Prince Fielder was thrown out at the plate trying to score from 1st on Delmon Young's double in the 2nd inning.
Ir's Madison Bumgarner vs. Austin Jackson to start game 2. Bamgarner gets the high strike call on 2 borderline pitches, Jackson called out on strikes on full count. Infante made it easier, striking out swinging on 3 pitches.
Miguel Cabrera grounds out to short to end a completely "meh" 13 pitch top of the 1st.
Fister counters Bumgarner by striking out lead off man Angel Pagan. Marco Scutaro sends a one-hopper to Jhonny P2ralta for out number 2. First pitch swinging, Pablo Sandoval sends a fat Panda of a fly ball to Delmon Young for the 3rd out.
Leading off the 2nd, Prince Fielder is plunked in the bicep, first runner of the game. Young rifled a ground ball down the left field line, and the ball caroms back into left after hitting the kick-out in the stands. Making a split-second decision which will be justifiably second guessed for the remainder of the series, Gene Lamont waved around the not very fleet of foot Fielder. A prefect relay from Scutaro and a sweep tag by Buster Posey nailed Fielder at the plate.
Cue Tigers fan base exploding in Lamont hate.
Instead of runners on 2nd and 3rd with no one out, the Tigers had a runner on 2nd and 1 out. Peralta popped out and Avisail Garcia struck out to derail what looked to have all the makings of a big inning.
Bottom of 2, Posey led off with a single, the Giants' first hit. Pence hit a can of corn to center, Brandon Belt struck out swinging. But just as it looked like Fister was going to pitch past Posey's single...a near disaster took place.
Gregor Blanco drilled a liner which appeared to catch Fister flush on the side of his skull. The ball landed in center field, while trainer Kevin Rand rushed out to check on what appeared to be a seemingly OK Fister. Amazingly, he was found to be "fine" (in Fister's words) and continued with the inning after nearly ...well, let's not go there.
Brandon Crawford walked after taking what appeared to be a least 5 strikes, Fister getting squeezed. With the bases loaded, the NL not having a DH finally came in handy. Bumgarner popped up to end a wild, but scoreless, inning.
Top of 3, the Tigers followed up by going down in order, including strikeouts of Fister and Jackson.
Bottom of the 3rd, Fister was showing no ill effects of being hit in the head and set the Giants down in order on 3 consecutive ground balls.
Infante led off the 4th with an infield single, an in-between hop eating up Crawford at short. But Cabrera hits the ball on the freaking screws, but the liners is hit directly at Panda. Fielder follows with a long drive which dies at the track. Then Infante is picked off and is thrown out at 2nd by a hair as his lead foot misses the bag on the slide (much like Fielder's foot hanging above home plate as he was tagged out).
As my hockey fan friend on Twitter, The Triple Deke, said, "This sport is cruel."
Posey led off the bottom of the 4th with a routine fly ball to Young (not that any fly ball to Delmon is routine). Pence had a long at bat, fouling off several pitches before hitting a liner to left center Jackson ran down. Belt's sinking line drive was grabbed by Infante to end the inning, the game remaining scoreless.
What had become a pitcher's duel continued in the 5th, the Tigers, once again, going down in order. Young struck out, Peralta sending a lazy fly to Pence, Garcia weakly grounding to 2nd.
It was more of the same for Fister in the bottom of the 5th, sending the Giants down in order on 2 ground balls and a strikeout. Good thing, because Fister was going to have to shut out the Giants if the Tigers were going to win.
After 2 were down in the 6th, Jackson walked after missing a home run, yanking it just foul. Infante ripped a liner off Bumgarner just foul, before striking out to end another frustrating inning against Bumgarner.
Bottom of 6, Fister had retired 13 Giants in a row before Panda looped a single over the glove of a leaping Infante. Posey hit a can of corn to left, but Young was playing on the waterfront and had to sprint (if you can call it "sprinting" in Young's case) in to make a running catch, ending another scoreless inning.
Cabrera led off the 7th with a long at bat, showing the Tigers how to make a pitcher work and rewarded with a base on balls on the 9th pitch.
But Fielder's struggles continued, seeing 2 pitches, swinging at both, the 2nd a come-backer to Bumgarner for an easy 1-6-3 double play. Young ended another inning against
Cy Young Bumgarner by grounding to short.
Jim Leyland started making moves in the bottom of the 7th, Don Kelly over in left for Dr. Strangeglove as Fister remained in the game. But Pence sent an 0-2 seeing eye ground ball into left between Peralta and Cabrera. That was all for Fister, Leyland calling on Smyly to face Belt.
Smyly had a job to do, get the left hander out. Instead, he walked him. He also had a bit a bad luck (what a damn surprise), what looked to be a double play ball to Fielder was correctly called foul. Fielder's foot was on the foul line.
Smyly was left in to face the lefty, Blanco, who was up to do just one thing, bunt. Smyly immediately fell behind 3-1. Blanco does get the bunt down just fair. The Tigers do the smart thing, let it roll foul...BUT IT DOESN'T. The ball hugs the baseline and rolls to a stop, in fair territory.
That's the exact moment I realized the Baseball Gods want the Giants to win.
Smyly bucked down and induced Carwford to his a hard ground ball to Infante. The Tigers chose the double play over trying to stop the run from scoring, Pence crossing the plate as the Tigers turned a 4-6-3 double play.
Smyly got out of further trouble by stinking out Ryan Theriot, who was pinch hitting for Bumgarner. But the damage was done, the Giants taking a 1-0 lead. Considering the Tigers' moribund offense, 1 run was likely going to be more than enough.
Setup man Santiago Casilla started the 8th for the Giants. The Tigers went down without a peep. Peralta popped up, Andy Dirks pinch hit for Garcia and grounded out to 2nd, Laird the same, but to short.
A wild Smyly walked Pagan on 4 pitches to start the bottom of the 8th. After striking out Scutaro, Pagan barely stole 2nd on a breaking ball to Sandoval. Laird made a perfect throw, but Pagan had picked the perfect pitch to run on, narrowly beating Infante's tag.
With 1st base open, the Tigers elected to walk Panda, but keep in mind it was to pitch to the likely NL MVP, Posey. Leyland immediately went for the double switch. Quintin Berry entered the game in left, Kelly moved to right, Dotel came on to pitch. This set up Berry to lead off the 9th. It's the move fans of the NL style of baseball always claim to be the pinnacle of STRATEGY!
Whatever.. I still prefer the DH.
Dotel quickly walked Posey on 4 pitches, the Giants loading the bases for the second straight inning. You knew it wasn't going to end well.
Pence at the plate, Dotel had him down 0-2. Needing a strikeout, Pence fouled off a couple of Dotel pitches, then hit a sacrifice fly to right, scoring Pagan. The Giants now held an insurmountable 2-0 lead.
When is a 2-0 lead insurmountable? When it's the Tigers in the World Series.
Leyland pulled Dotel, and called on Phil Coke to get the final out of the 8th. He continued his scoreless post season by striking out Belt to end the inning.
It would up to Berry, Jackson and Infate to try and get something started against the Giants' closer, Sergio Romo in the top of the 9th.If one could get on base, it would give Cabrera a shot at tying the game.
Berry sent a can of corn to left.
Jackson struck out swinging.
Infante popped up to 1st, ending what could be considered the worst offensive game of the Tigers' season.
Cabrera was left on deck, the last 6 Tigers going down in order. As it was so well put in the game thread, with the Tigers' flaccid, offense, Cabrera might as well have been standing on the moon
Hell of a time for the Tigers to start playing like it's May again. Even though the Tigers head home, where they do play much better, the Giants now have their 2 best starters, Ryan Vogelsong and Matt Cain, set to go with a 2-0 series lead.
Let's just say my confidence is at low ebb.
The irrational fan in me says:
EVERYBODY PANIC! Where's the offense? Why leave a .322 hitter in Andy Dirks on the bench? WHY? This is all Justin Verlander's fault for losing the All-Star Game! This all Bud Selig's fault for making the All-Star Game count! This is FOX's fault, because Buck and McCarver suck! This is all Delmon Young's fault because he's Delmon Young! The useless windmill known as Gene Lamont never should never have sent Prince Fielder! If you can't beat Madison Freaking Bumgarner, you don't deserve to win a World Series! With all their weirdness and every bounce going the Giants' way, the first 2 games are proof the Baseball gods have a grudge against Detroit! The Tigers can't even score a run and they have to win 4 of 5? Yeah, right.
The rational fan in me says:
Despite what the Giants are doing, there's no such thing as momentum or mojo or karma. Things can change with one at bat. It's just 2 wins, which doesn't guarantee a damn thing, it takes 4 wins to take a series. The Tigers can win the next 3 at home, they play like gangbusters at Comerica. Anibal Sanchez and Max Scherzer are more than capable of shutting down the Giants, they've done it against better offenses in the ore powerful AL. I still think the Tigers are the more talented team, and talent will win out. Cabrera, Fielder, Verlander, come on! The Tigers have proven to be resilient beyond belief, and have played some of their best baseball with their backs against the wall. I thought it was all over with 2 weeks left in the season, yet they won the division. So why should I write them off now?
Personally, I'm torn between the two. Feel free to make your pick.
Bullets are brought to you by one of the greatest Tigers of all time and a genuine war hero, Hammerin' Hank Greenberg.
- Joe Buck calls the Giants "gritty" in the pregame. Apparently the Tigers are getting "Epstein'ed."
- Buck also broke out the lazy "Tigers are rusty due to the long break" narrative as well.
- Tim McCarver adds Doug Fister has a "violent delivery." That's a new one.
- After going yard 3 times in a 4-4 game 1, Pablo Sandoval flew out to left in the 1st inning of game 2. Fister gets kudos for being the first Tigers pitcher to retire the Panda.
- After Prince Fielder was thrown out at the plate, FOX's Ken Rosenthal tweeted: "Prince in dugout, very upset, screaming and cursing, apparently didn’t like call. Replay shows it to be correct." No freaking kidding he was upset. Yes, the call was correct. But I don't blame him one damn bit for being upset over the play. It's the WORLD SERIES for crhissakes. What do you expect Fielder to do, shrug it off? Much ado about nothing, which is just what I expect from Rosenthal.
- After Fister was drilled by the liner, McCarver went on about pitchers wearing helmets, much like the base coaches are required to do. It'll never happen, but I'm not going to ridicule him after Fister was damn lucky to not suffer a serious injury.
- Are we going to hear about Austin Jackson's reduced leg kick in in every damn game? Apparently so, as FOX is 2 for 2.
- Sergio Romo's 4th inning dugout interview should be the one which kills those pointless wastes of time forever. Well, one can hope.
- Rosenthal reported Romo was trending on Twitter because "fans enjoyed his stylings." Which Twitter was that, because it sure wasn't on the Twitter I was using.
- McCarver after Sandoval singled in the 6th: "With that body type Panda has to work harder to stay fit and trim." OK, McCarver is just making crap up at this point.
- As Buck and McCarver were gushing over Bumgarner for tossing 7 shutout innings, they apparently forgot Fister had been matching him pitch for pitch, inning for inning.
- McCarver after Blanco's fluke bunt single: "Giants making their own breaks." Word of warning: If I ever run into McCarver, he's getting a punch in the nuts.
- Buck was going on how Andy Dirks had a nice year for the Tigers, hitting .322 and all. Of course, thanks to the lack of a DH, he's rotting on the bench. The National League, where offense goes to die.
- Via Mlive's Chris Iott: Tigers have had 5 runners reach base. Three ended up making outs. Giants faced 2 hitters over the minimum.
- Via ESPN Stats and Info: Tigers have been shut out twice this postseason. They were shut out twice during the entire regular season.
- Via ESPN Sportscenter: In the history of the fall classic, 50 teams have taken a 2-0 lead in a best-of-7 series. 40 went on to win the World Series.
- Jim Leyland on Fielder getting thrown out at the plate: "Gene (Lamont) got a little over aggressive" That's as close as you'll ever hear him come to throwing someone under the bus.
- Gene Lamont on the same play: "I just saw the ball bounce away from the left fielder, ended up they made a perfect relay and I was wrong"
- Leyland on choosing the double play in the 7th: "We were absolutely thrilled to come out of that inning with only 1 run." Unfortunately, with his offense in a total funk, that all but ended the game.
- Leyland on the lack of offense: "Our offense is fine." That he has be saying through gritted teeth.
- Leyland with more on the lack of offense: "We think we are a good offensive club, so hopefully we'll get our offense going when we get back to Motown." I sure as Hell hope so.
- To Leyland's credit, he's still calm, cool and collected. There's no point in losing your composure at this point of the season. It wouldn't serve any purpose and as a manager, you can never, ever let your players see you panic.
Fielder is out at home. Lamont, you big dummy!
This was called a ball? Yes, it was. Typical call due to what was a very inconsistent strike zone.
Scutaro is called out diving into 1st. Guys who dive into 1st base aren't scrappy, they're idiots. Even more so when the 1st baseman is the massive Prince Fielder.
The Baseball Gods gleefully twist the knife in the Tigers' back as Blanco's bunt somehow stays fair.
3 ROARS: (I'm not bothering with a PotG poll, we all know who would win)
Doug Fister: He
Doug Fister: Better
Phil Coke: Still killing lefties dead.
The offense: 2 hits in a World Series game.
The offense: 0 runs in a World Series game.
The offense: 9 strikeouts in a World Series game.
WORLD SERIES GAME 1 PLAYER OF THE GAME:
Unaffected by the bright lights in his first World Series appearance, Austin Jackson had 2 hits, scored a run and played excellent defense. All of which was enough to give him PotG for what really was a disappointing game 1.