Tag Archives: NLCS

Let’s Hear It For The Boys!

I’m not the biggest baseball fan in the world, but I am a huge Giants fan!  So if you, by chance, were wondering why I haven’t posted anything about Lincecum’s masterful Game 1, Cain’s solid outing in Game 2, the near carbon-copy of Lincecum’s aforementioned performance by Jonathan Sanchez in Game 3, and now Bumgarner’s impressive night on the road in a close out game, a game which started as Bobby Cox’s potential finale’ … quite simply put, I wasn’t trying to jinx my boys.

Now that the NLDS is over with, and I must say, it was an exciting one at that, with each game being decided by controversial calls and a single run,  but as I was saying, now that it’s over with, I can finally give my boys some praise!  If pitching wins in the playoffs, I have to like our chances at a pennant, period.  Between our four starters, the Giants gave up three earned runs.  Do the math, three earned runs, four games.  That is lights out pitching.  Lincecum highlighted the series with a brilliant, dazzling playoff debut, in a pressure packed environment in which every pitch was magnified.  One hanging slider, one mistake, and the Giants lose.  Lincecum wouldn’t allow it, possibly dialing up the best pitching performance of the post season thus far.  I know, I’m biased, but Roy Halladay had four runs to lean against, Timmy didn’t.  And Timmy rung up 14 batters … I’m just saying.

Matt Cain followed it up, by going 7 & 1/3, only giving up an unearned run.  Although not as flashy as Lincecum, or Sanchez, Cain delivers in workman like fashion, but all that matters is, he gets results.  Unfortunately Romo ruined his playoff debut.  And how about Jonathan Sanchez?  Called upon to right the ship that was capsizing after taking a major hit, because the Giants blew a three run lead late in Game 2, losing in the 11th … but Sanchez delivered the goods.  Unfortunately Romo ruined his playoff debut.  Finally Bumgarner.  How cool is this cat?  The Braves were a desperate team swinging desperate bats, and despite some fireworks early for the Braves, Bumgarner never flinched.  He stayed calm, cool and collective, and gave us 6 & 1/3 of solid pitching. 

Onto Buster “NL ROY” Posey!  He hit .375, and outplayed his ROY counter part in every facet of the game, but what impressed me most about Posey, his ability to lead.  Name another first year catcher who can command the respect of such a mighty pitching staff?  But when anyone of the studs on the mound lost control, it was Posey who got them back.  Posey made all the right plays, even the ones that shouldn’t have counted, and he called the right games. 

I can go on and on about the Giants.  B-Willy, who resembles Jean-Claude Van Damme’s best friend in Bloodsport, and pitches as intimidating as he looks.  Aubrey Huff, Cody Ross, etc.  Euphoric is the word that best describes my feelings right now.  I’m on cloud nine, a natural high, whatever it is, I’m enjoying every bit of it … at least for the next few days.  Then my mind is on Philly.  Tough task ahead.  But these Giants are not done. Regardless of how the rest of the post season turns out for the Giants, this year’s rendition of the team is by far, my all-time favorite.  Never have we had a group of players who the fans can connect to so easily, never have we had a team, that I feel, genuinely cares about us just the same.  Never have we had a team that genuinely cares for each other for Christ’s sake!  Bonds, Kent.  Do you see the emotion these Giants let loose every time one of them comes through for each other!?  It literally made my eyes tear to see Lincecum do the Jordan fist pump in the dug out after Huff tied the game in the top of the 9th in Game 3.  Then Freddy Sanchez ,with his slide into home plate right into a jumping fist pump of his own, after scoring the go ahead run off a Conrad error!  It’s our team, it’s like rooting for the boys, it’s our city, who is yearning for a winner, it’s how we got here, it’s how we get it done, the torture, and it’s how we wear our emotions on our sleeves.  There’s a certain magic in the air surrounding these Giants, the city, the fans right now.  I’m just happy to be a part of it.

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Phightin’ Phils!

Phillie Phanatic Phillies Mascot

As I watched the final outs of the NLCS, I had to say goodbye to the eastcoast westcoast matchup I hoped for when the series began. I can’t say I didn’t see it coming, but nonetheless it’s always a little disappointing when it happens. There was one thing that struck me as odd though. When they made the last out, didn’t it seem like a lackluster response from the Phillies? Sure they were smiling and stuff, but I didn’t see the normal passion that most teams have after winning the National League Championship. They seemed to trot/walk it into the pitchers mound for the always predictable dog pile, but they way it slowly came together was disappointing to me. Maybe it’s the been there done that feeling, but you’d think we’d see at least one or two guys get tackled or more guys sprinting to start celebrating. All in all, I was a little disappointed in this celebration moment in sports. I bet the Phillie Phanatic showed more emotion when they won! We’ll see if they have a chance at a redemption celebration against the Yankees, er, I mean the winner of the ALCS.


Previewing the LCS

Wow, that was fast!  Three sweeps and a 3-1 series and all of a sudden it’s time for the LCS.  I was primed and ready to watch some Game 1’s tonight, BUT, there are none!  I guess that’s what happens when the first round is such a dud.  I’m disappointed to see the Angels in the LCS, but at least it came at the expense of the Red Sox, who laid an egg and furthered their return to postseason incompetence.  The Rockies looked like they were going to make it a series, but Huston Street reverted back to his Oakland postseason days and blew another series.  That leaves us with four teams fighting for the crown.  Let’s take a look at the matchups….

Philadelphia Phillies vs. Los Angeles Dodgers.  Game One: Thursday, 5:07pm Pacific Time


The Dodgers are the beneficiaries of the coveted extra rest after sweeping Matt Holliday’s nuts and the Cardinals.  The question mark, however, hovers around Clayton Kershaw, the starter for game 1. Kershaw was solid this season, but you can’t help but wonder about a rookie pitching game 1 of the LCS.  It’s a high risk high reward move for Joe Torre that could – emphasis on could – pay huge dividends for his squad.  The Dodgers have yet to use Chad Billingsley as a starter, but Torre will nonetheless give the ball back to his rookie to face off against Cole Hamels.  The Phillies appear to have the advantage on paper, solely based on the pitching matchup, but both teams are heading in with a healthy dose of momentum.  We know the Dodgers offense will put up 3-5 runs per game, so the key will be whether the Phillies score 10 to win or 1 and take the loss.  It should be a tight series – I see the Dodgers escaping in 7.  Should it be a shorter series, look for the Phillies to take it in four or five.

Anaheim Angels vs. New York Yankees. Game One: Friday, 4:47pm Pacific Time


I don’t know what to hope for in this series.  It’s probably my two least favorite teams outside of Boston, but, had the Red Sox been in this series at least I’d know who to root for.  Being an A’s fan, I’m sure when the puck is dropped, I’ll find myself rooting for the Yankees.  But that doesn’t really affect what goes on on the field now does it?  My guess is, since both of these offenses are pretty capable, this series will come down to pitching.  The Yankees are going to a three man rotation with Sabathia, Burnett, and Pettitte.  Critics are, well, criticizing this move, which is wearing pretty thin on me, considering it used to be standard practice.  New York has plenty of arms in their bullpen so even if CC, AJ, or AP can only go five or six, they should be just fine.  The biggest red flag in this series seems to be Anaheim’s young pitching in the new Yankee Stadium.  We know John Lackey is a son of a bitch and won’t be bothered by the New York crowd – but he might pitch like shit.  If the Angels don’t win the first game of the series, it’d be unfathomable for Weaver or Saunders to pony up and carry the team.   I’m thinking Yankees in 5, and worst case scenario… Yankees in 6.