The San Francisco Giants unpacked their brooms and completed what has seemed to be their destiny since losing game 4 of the NLCS—a world series championship. The title, their second in three years, sets the stage for the Bay City team to be baseball’s next dominating force. Like previous dynasties in New York and Atlanta, the Giants have a team that is as likely to return to the fall classic as not. They have outstanding youth, all-star experience, a stingy rotation, and a lights out bullpen. Basically they’re good. They’re very good. And once again, they’re champions.
Outside of Pablo Sandoval’s Herculean game 1 performance, the series wasn’t exactly exciting, but the results were pretty conclusive. “Obviously, there was no doubt about it. They swept us. There was certainly no bad breaks, no fluke. I tip my hat to them,” said Detroit Tigers manager Jim Leyland. In fact, the Giants were all business and a team with a mission since they reeled off three straight wins against the Cardinals to win the NLCS.
Just how dominating were they? Well, not only were they unbeaten in their last 7 post-season games, they outscored their opponents 36 to 7. San Francisco pitchers threw shutouts in four of those seven games, victimizing the St. Louis Cardinals and the Detroit Tigers twice each. “These guys made it easy,” Manager Bruce Bochy said. “They just wanted to win.”
The ten-inning deciding game of the World Series had something that no other game in the series had—a lead change. In fact, Triple Crown winner Miguel Cabrera’s go ahead two-run drive in the third inning was the first lead change in any post-season game going back 75 innings to game 3 of the NLCS.
The game had to be rough for the west coast team. The temps were in the low 40s with a wind gusting up to 25mph and if that wasn’t enough, a light rain fell throughout the game. Nevertheless, there was a game to play.
The game-winning rally was started by DH Ryan Theriot, who won a World Series as a member of the St. Louis Cardinals just one year ago. He dropped a single lightly into right field off of reliever Phil Coke to begin the top of the tenth. He was then sacrificed to second by Brandon Crawford, who almost legged out a single on a bunted ball that nearly got past Coke. The rally was on the verge of stalling when Coke fanned Angel Pagan for the second out of the inning. Marco Scutaro, the mid-season acquisition from Colorado, followed Pagan and he put a 3-1 pitch from into the wet grass of centerfield which sent Theriot racing towards home plate, just beating the throw. Sergio Romo, the Giants’ closer came in to pitch the bottom of the tenth and set the Tigers down in order by striking out the side to put an exclamation point on the decisive win.
The World Series MVP went to Pablo Sandoval who hit .500 (8 for 16) in the series with three game 1 home runs. Buster Posey also went yard in the final game which marks the first time that both reigning batting title winners went deep in the same World Series game. San Francisco starter Matt Cain also had an opportunity to make history in the game. He had a chance to join Andy Pettitte (2009) and Derek Lowe (2004) as the only pitchers to win all three series-deciding games. He came up short, leaving after 7 innings of 3-run ball. The win went to reliever Santiago Casilla who came in to get the final out in the bottom of the ninth.