Well, the St. Louis Cardinals figured out how to deprive San Francisco of any offense. In a game that was delayed 3.5 hours, the Cards simply pitched around Buster Posey every time there was runner in scoring position. The Giants 1-3 and 7-9 hitters, well, hit. Case in point, when the Giants scored their first run in the top of the third inning it was back to back hits by Angel Pagan and Marco Scutaro, who hit a double. Pablo Sandoval hit a sacrifice ground out to score Pagan and advanced Scutaro to 3B. With Posey at the plate, they didn’t throw any quality strikes and simply walked him. With runners on first and third and one out, Hunter Pencecame to the plate and grounded into a double play. *sigh*
Oct 17, 2012; St. Louis, MO, USA; The tarp sits on the field during game three of the 2012 NLCS between the St. Louis Cardinals and the San Francisco Giants at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports
The Giants had other scoring opportunities but could not cash in. In the top of the fourth, with runners at the corners and one out, Matt Cain came to the plate and was told to bunt. Now ideally this doesn’t do anything but advance the runner from first to second. In this situation, Cain is a good enough hitter to hit a sacrifice to get the runner in which would have tied the game. Hindsight is 20/20 but, even Joe Buck (yuck) thought Bochy’s idea was wrong.
In the top of the seventh, Sandoval and Posey hit back-to-back singles with one out. Pence struck out swinging and Brandon Belt struck out looking. Although replays showed that Belt got a bad called strike three with the ball below the knees.
Cain pitched well and gave up a two run homer to Matt Carpenter in the bottom of the third. Irony is that he replaced Carlos Beltran, who left the game with knee troubles. He also allowed a run in the bottom of the seventh which should have been a double play ball but, Scutaro chose to get just one out.