Madison Bumgarner returned to being an elite pitcher, and the Tigers did just enough to help their opponent win (something they've been doing all year). Now the Giants now head to Motown with a 2-0 lead in the World Series thanks to their 2-0 win over Detroit last night. Unlike the 1st game and almost every game of the championship series', this was an actual good game- one decided by killer pitching and one or two pivotal moments. Starting pitchers Madison Bumgarner and Doug Fister were outstanding, shutting the opponent out through 6 innings. Fister was super impressive when you consider he got drilled in the head in the 2nd inning with line drive. Fister would give up a single to Underpants to lead off the 7th and Jim Leyland would go to his pen.Ooops. Rookie Drew Smyly, brought in because the rest of the Tigers bullpen is pants, would walk Brandon Belt and give up a bunt hit to Gregor Blanco ( I choose Greg!). The ever popular double play would drive in the go ahead run and the Riot would pinch strike out to make sure the Tigers only give up that one run. The Giants would add another run, this time on an even more exciting sacrifice fly in the 8th. After going 7, baumgarner would give way to Santiago Casilla, who killed my father and should prepare to die, who pitched a flawless 8th, and Sergio Romo, tired from talking to Joe Buck and Tim McCarver for 45 minutes about his beard would nail down the win.
THE STUD- Madison Bumgarner. The lefty had not had a good playoffs coming into this game. But who cares. 2 Hits over 7 innings while striking out 8. Winner winner chicken dinner. Kept the crowd, which has been amazing all playoffs, into the game and turned it over to a rested, eager and competent bullpen.
THE DUD- Gene Lamont. Boy there's a blast from the past. In the 2nd inning, Prince Fielder leads off with a single. Delmon Young Rockets one down the left field line and it takes a goofy bounce off the wall for a double. Lamont, channeling his buffoonery days with the White Sox, SENDS FIELDER HOME! And even though the throw from left field missed the first cutoff man they still got Fielder out because Prince Fielder is a load and he's trying to score from first on a double to LEFT!!!!! How....I mean who????....What????? Speechless. Instead of runners on 2nd and 3rd with no outs you have a runner on 2nd with one and a jacked up Giants squad. Game turned right there.
THE IN BETWEEN- Leyland's decision to bring a rookie late in the game in a role he's not familiar with was also highly dubious. Granted, his options down there run from Really? to Oh, God no! but they have gotten you here to game 2. I thought Smyly would be brought in just to face Belt. Sometimes, starters make great makeshift relievers in the postseason. See Lincecum, Tim. But a rookie pitcher, in an unfamiliar role, in an unfamiliar park, with a World Series game on the line ( Can't call it pivotal. They're all pivotal.) To the left you see a rock, and if you look to your right, you'll see a hard place.
So there goes my Tigers in 5 pick. The series now shifts to Detroit, and if the weather here is any indication, it's gonna be cold. The Tigers will counter with their best pitcher this year Max Scherzer. Well, best since the All-Star break anyway. So in no way do I see this series as over. But the Tigers bats are gonna have to heat up in a cold park against the Giants hottest (Voglesong) and best (Cain). But if you want the big bear you have to knock off all the bottles. Let's see if Detroit can get on up and get down and make this thing a series.