Don’t get me wrong – I love Tim Lincecum. We all love Tim Lincecum. But why doesn’t Matt Cain get the credit he deserves? Cain is an ace on most other squads. He’s a workhorse. He’s liquid money in big games. Yet, he continually gets dusted off in the media as far less. It was funny, after the Game 1 victory, droves of media surrounded Aubrey Huff’s locker (which is within spitting distance to Cain’s) and piled on the questions for the Transformers fan. Cain, the Game 2 starter, sat alone….quietly. No media cared. But I guess that’s how it goes when you hold the fourth longest scoreless innings streak in MLB playoff history….
Going into the bottom of the 8th inning, the Giants held a slim 2-0 lead which had been staked to them by a solo homer off the bat of Renteria in the 5th and a bloop Uribe single in the 7th. Then, for the Rangers, all hell broke loose…
I’d explain it, but, I think the Yahoo Box Score inning recap might be sexier….
"– A. Huff walked, B. Posey scored, N. Schierholtz to third, C. Ross to second– J. Uribe walked, N. Schierholtz scored, C. Ross to third, A. Huff to second– E. Renteria singled to shallow left, C. Ross and A. Huff scored, J. Uribe to third– A. Rowand tripled to deep right center, J. Uribe and E. Renteria scored– A. Torres doubled to shallow left, A. Rowand scored"
Yep, that’s even a little Aaron Rowand you see mixed in there. You know things were going right when that happens.
By the end of the 8th inning, the Giants had expanded their 2-0 lead to a 9-0 lead and the Rangers looked clearly dejected as the camera panned their faces in the dugout. Hard not to after the drillings they took in Game 1 and Game 2. One might lead you to think the Rangers might have folded….but I wouldn’t be so sure, and I’m positive the Giants aren’t either. The Rangers can hit and hit well. And the Ballpark in Arlington is a little shop of horrors for most starting pitchers. No left handed starter has won a game in Texas for 3+ months. The Giants simply did what they had to do, win the first two games at home – now the pressure is on the Rangers – an extremely satisfying feeling.
With the win last night, the Giants are all but guaranteed a return to San Francisco no matter what takes place in Texas this weekend. Talk about a calming vibe, much different than most of us felt during the Phillies series.
I don’t know if it’s me, but, I haven’t been nearly as nervous this series as I was during the NLCS – and I’m guessing it’s the home park factor. I’ve gotten that sense from many others as well. Not to say many aren’t biting their nails at every pitch, but, it’s not the collective mass suicide of nerves we saw in Philly.
In non-game action news, by now you’ve most likely heard (and if you haven’t, feel free to roll your eyes) that Jose Guillen and his wife are tied to an investigation about receiving shipments of HGH. According to the New York Times, Guillen’s wife was on the receiving end of multiple shipments of HGH to a San Francisco related address, and being Guillen was already named in the Mitchell Report, well, yeah.
The Giants continually stated it was a bum neck that kept Guillen off the postseason roster(s), but when they mentioned he had made the “choice” to remain in San Francisco during the NLCS, I couldn’t help but wonder what the real situation was. I guess we know now. I knew there was no way he stayed behind because of a sore neck…
"Speaking of the Rally Thong, Aubrey Huff wore only that and a T-shirt while doing his media interviews after the game. “Cameras up!” he yelled as he stepped into the cocoon.After he grew a little fatigued, he begged out by saying, “Last one. OK, the Daddy’s takin’ it in.”"
If you can’t love this cast of characters….