SF Giants News

San Francisco Giants: Avoid complacency & a return trip to StL

By Mark ONeill

Now is not the time to become complacent. The San Francisco Giants have taken a two-games-to-one lead over the St. Louis Cardinals, in the National League Championship Series, with the next two games being played at AT&T Park, before returning to St. Louis, if necessary.

If necessary.

Those may be the two most deadly words in the Giants’ vocabulary right now. “If necessary” implies success. It implies that the Giants have been so efficient, that they may be able to skip the return to St. Louis. After all, the Giants did not have to go back to Washington DC, and that worked out pretty well.

Ryan Vogelsong, also known as “Lights Out,” is going on Wednesday, and Madison Bumgarner, the staff ace is slated for Thursday’s potential finale to the NLCS. Each is eminently capable of doing his part to keep the Giants grounded in San Francisco.

The Giants need to obliterate the words, if necessary, from their collective mind, and focus on the fact that this is a seven-game series.

The Cardinals are just too deadly, and those seventh-inning rallies are killers.

The Cards are a stubborn team and they have been devastating from the seventh inning onward. The last NLCS in 2012, between these two clubs, featured one of the most tenacious playoff runs in MLB history.

No, this seven-game set will not only determine the best in the National League, it will hone the skills of the winner to face the victor in the Junior League. What’s happening in Kansas City is frightening, and should the Royals go on to defeat the Baltimore Orioles, whichever team faces them will have very little wriggle room for error.

Both teams in the NLCS are capable of making comebacks; they have put on quite a show the past two games. Both teams are equally capable of coming back in a series.

The Giants must not get complacent. They must seize the opportunity to finish up the NLCS in San Francisco, even if it harms their frequent-flier miles.

“If necessary” should apply to anything but baseball games and the Giants would do well to remember this.