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Saturday, October 16, 2010

Giants Take Game 1

It was another nail-biter, like most of the Giants games have been here in the postseason, but the Giants got the job done against Roy Halladay and the Phillies in game 1 of the NLCS Saturday night.

It was a much anticipated battle of two of baseball's premiere right-handers, and they didn't really disappoint. The real difference was Roy Halladay's repeat mistake he made to Cody Ross after Ross took him deep in the 3rd. Lincecum, who was battling a blister problem on his throwing hand showed no ill-effects, as he went 7 strong innings, and threw well over 100 pitches. The Giants just look like a confident bunch right now. They're capitalizing on opportunities, for the most part, and they're doing just enough to win these close games. They did have a big chance in top of the 9th to cushion their lead with the bases loaded and only 1-out, but Brad Lidge did some tight-roping of his own and got out of the mess without allowing a run. With all the attention on this game, and most of it will be all praise about the Giants. So instead, I want to make a couple of points about this series moving forward, and a few areas in which the Giants could "tune-up":

Play Pablo: I like the way Mike Fontenot is playing, and the Giants are winning, so it's tough to really complain about what lineup Bochy is using, but I'd really like to see Pablo Sandoval, who if they can manage to get hot could have a big impact on this series, put together a few at-bats. He's kind of the wild card right now as he hasn't gotten any PT since game 2 of the NLDS.

Stop Using Wilson Before the 9th: I know Wilson got it done tonight, but it was close, and I think Boch should really consider not using Wilson before the 9th inning unless in a dire situation. It just seems like it's taking a bit of toll on him, throwing all those pitches, not to mention, he's not used to pitching after taking such a long rest, like the Giants gave him in the top of the 9th.

Top of the Order has to get going: Again, the Giants won game 1, so it's not going to get too much attention, but the Giants top-2 in the order are struggling mightily in this postseason, otherwise I think the Giants would be putting up a lot more runs. Torres and Sanchez have just 5 hits between them in 5 post-season games, that's not going to get it done much longer.

Finally, move up Ross: Tough to argue with the results of using Ross in the 8th spot, but moving him up in the order could help jump-start the offense a bit. Maybe even move him into the 2-spot, or leadoff like Boch was doing for a bit while Torres was down. Still though, it's a tough call moving around a hot-hitter like Ross has been.

Game 2 Glance: Jonathan Sanchez takes on Roy Oswalt in what should be another fine pitching match-up in Sunday's game 2. It's a game in which many are overlooking Sanchez, who isn't as much a household name as Oswalt, but Sanchez has been nails over the 2nd half. So has Oswalt though, but he struggled in game 2 of the NLDS against Cincinnati, so I think the Giants will be plenty confident. Like always for Sanch, the key will be to establish his pitches and his zone early, and to stay in that strikezone. When he does that, he's really tough, and I think his teammates behind him will be plenty confident, relaxed and ready.
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3 Comments:

  • At 8:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Sandoval? Are you kidding? This lineup is the right one - Pablo can't hit for sh*t right now...

     
  • At 3:51 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    G's are playing with no fear right now and i have a good feeling about them. I'm loving this Ross guy, making us forget all about Jose Guillen and Aaron Rowand.

     
  • At 5:49 AM, Anonymous Andy7 said…

    The Phillies have far better depth. Cole Hamels as a third starter? After Tim Lincecum, the jump is just far too great.

     

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