Barb Caffrey's Blog

Writing the Elfyverse . . . and beyond

2012 NLCS: San Francisco Giants Force Game 7

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Folks, two games ago, the St. Louis Cardinals had a nearly insurmountable 3-1 advantage in the National League Championship Series (NLCS).

But the resurgent San Francisco Giants have looked extremely sharp in their last two games, winning game 5 by a score of 5-0 behind Barry Zito, and Game 6 by a score of 6-1 behind Ryan Vogelsong.  This means that the Giants have tied up the NLCS at three games apiece and have now forced Game 7, which will be played on October 22, 2012 (otherwise known as tomorrow evening).

I got a chance to listen to the last two innings of the game (courtesy of ESPN Radio 540 in Milwaukee), and I enjoyed it; not only did the Cardinals lose, 6-1, they lost to Vogelsong, who three short years ago was a nearly complete unknown.  (Of course, since then he’s done more than a little to prove he’s an outstanding major league starting pitcher, posting records of 13-7 with a 2.71 ERA in 2011 and 14-9 with a 3.37 ERA in 2012.)

Best of all, this was the second time that Vogelsong won in this series, as he previously beat Chris Carpenter and the Cardinals on the 15th by a score of 7-1.  And this is the third time Vogelsong has won in the playoffs . . . out of three tries.  Impressive!

At any rate, Game 7 tomorrow night will be between Matt Cain of the Giants and Kyle Lohse of the Cards.  Cain got chased in Game 3, giving up three runs in six and 2/3 innings of work, so he is in need of a bit of redemption, while Lohse benefited from Cain’s rare off-day even though Lohse pitched only five and 2/3 innings during that same game (to his credit, Lohse did give up only one run).

So keep an eye on whatever happens during Game 7 — though to my mind, it’s much more likely that the Giants will win than the Cardinals, especially as the Giants are at home.  (Confidential for Matt Cain — Lohse is hittable.  Really.  So do yourself a favor and study the films accordingly; a timely hit, from you, may be the difference between success and failure in Game 7.)

Whichever team wins will be facing the Detroit Tigers, winners of the American League Championship Series.  Detroit is a strong team that has pitching (Justin Verlander and a cast of thousands) and great hitting, though not-so-wonderful defense; their line-up features American League Triple Crown Winner Miguel Cabrera and former Milwaukee Brewers first baseman Prince Fielder.  (It will be interesting to see how Fielder does in his very first World Series appearance.)

I believe that the Giants would be the stronger team against the Tigers, but that the Cardinals are perhaps a better-balanced team than the Giants.  Either way, though, I’m hoping that the Giants, not the Cardinals, will win Game 7 tomorrow evening and be on their way to the ’12 World Series.

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