Sunday, September 9, 2012

GIANTS      78-61   ...             Suppose rubber-match was inevitable all along.
Los Angeles 74-66   4.5 GB    Kershaw takes the mound in prime time.

LA defeated the Giants, 3-2.

Giants and LA square off on ESPN Sunday Night Baseball at 5:05 PDT (8:05 EDT) from the 'Bell. It's the rubber match of the series, with two lefties-- Barry Zito and Clayton Kershaw-- starting.

Last Night's Game
Matt Cain would sure like to try again on pitch number 103, which he slung into the dirt and away from Buster Posey, allowing the tying run to score in the eighth. Up to that point, Cain had pitched well enough to win, and the Giants had just taken a 2-1 lead against Chris Capuano, who also pitched well enough to win and even scored the Dodgers' first run. Given a chance to work his way out of a jam after Juan Rivera led off the eighth with a double and was sacrificed to third, Cain instead uncorked his second wild pitch of the game, and Santiago Casilla came in to get the last two outs. In the top of the ninth, Jeremy Affeldt didn't fare so well. Two of those expensive LA pickup players, Adrian Gonzalez and Hanley Ramirez, tripled and doubled, respectively, costing Affeldt his second loss of the season. Oddly enough, LA then ran, or perhaps walked, themselves out of a potential big inning. After Andre Ethier walked, Ramirez started jogging toward third, apparently forgetting there was nobody on first! Posey quickly rifled one to Pablo Sandoval for an easy tag. Next at-bat, Ethier took off for second and was nailed by Posey's throw to end the inning. Gregor Blanco's two-out double in the ninth put the tying run at second, but Brandon League struck out Hector Sanchez to end it. For the first time in what seems like weeks, the Dodgers actually gained a full game on the Giants, and should they win tonight they'll leave town having taken two of three and ensuring the pennant race will last for some time yet. For the Giants, a win tonight essentially repels the Hated Invader, though a sweep would have likely delivered the death-blow. Well, the folks at ESPN certainly must be happy at the way things have turned out, especially since the NFL season opens today. Go Giants! (And Niners!)

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