The San Francisco Giants are one win away from winning the 2012 World Series. For the second straight game, the Giants defeated the Detroit Tigers 2-0. Giants starting pitcher Ryan Vogelsong went 5 2/3 innings giving up only five hits. The Giants offense was courtesy of an RBI triple from Gregor Blanco and an RBI single from Brandon Crawford. Both came in the second inning. The rest of the game was a pitching showdown. Tim Lincecum pitched 2 1/3 innings in relief and Sergio Romo pitched the ninth to get the save.
While the Tigers pitching has been fantastic since game one, their offense continues to struggle. After being two hit in game two, the Tigers were five hit in game three. Vogelsong didn’t even have great stuff. He struggled to get ahead in counts and walked four batters. The Tigers 3-4-5 hitters of Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder and Delmon Young struggled yet again. This game, they went 1-11.
So what has happened to the Tigers? Obviously, the Giants deserve some of the credit. They are pitching pretty well. However, they don’t deserve all of the credit. The starters have not been as dominant as one would think by looking at the statistics. I think the layoff has played a role. The Tigers lost their rhythm. Meanwhile, the Giants are oozing confidence. They were dominant in the final three games of the National League Championship Series. While they are not playing as dominantly now, they are still playing with a high level of confidence. When mixed in with the Tigers layoff, it has been a recipe for disaster for the American League Champions.
So is the series over? I think so. I have a hard time believing the Tigers can win four straight to win the World Series. Even if their bats warm up, the Giants pitching is solid and would only need to reach the level of the final three games of the NLCS once. Also, the Tigers bullpen cannot be relied upon. They would need to hold the lead for four games in a row without getting fatigued. They would also have to rely on a short bullpen considering how cold a Jose Valverde has been. I just can’t see it happening.