October 13th, 2012

NLCS Game 1 – Quick Hits

TONIGHT’S GAME…The San Francisco Giants host the St. Louis Cardinals in the 1st game of this best-of-7 National League Championship Series…Giants’ left-hander Madison Bumgarner (0-1, 8.31) will face Cardinals’ right-hander Lance Lynn (1-1, 7.36).

Today’s Starting Lineup

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HISTORY HAS BEEN MADE…The Giants became the 1st National League team to overcome a 2-0 deficit in the division series, which began in 1995, and they also became the 1st to take a best-of-five series by winning the last 3 games on the road…the Giants became just the 8th team in Major League history to come back from a 2-0 deficit to win a best-of-5 series in the postseason and the 1st since the 2003 Red Sox won 3-straight against the A’s.

Check out today’s complete game notes, which contain more stats than players watching MLB.com At Bat on the plane Friday night.

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MADISON BUMGARNER… Recorded 3 games this season with 10-plus strikeouts and no walks, tied with R.A. Dickey for the highest total in the Majors…according to Elias, no other Giants pitcher since 1900 has had 3 such games in one season.

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HUNTER PENCE… Is on a postseason roster for the 2nd-consecutive season and for the 2nd time in his career… Has hit safely in his last 3 games, going 4-for-12… Made his postseason debut with the Phillies last season, batting .211 (4-for-19) in 5 games.

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BUSTER BASH…C Buster Posey’s grand slam in Game 5 on Thursday was the 54th one in postseason history and the 3rd in Giants history…the others were by Will Clark in Game 1 of the 1989 NLCS and Chuck Hiller in Game 4 of the 1962 World Series…Posey became just the 4th player in Major League history to hit a grand slam in a “winner-take-all” postseason game.

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POSTSEASON HISTORY…The Giants franchise owns 6 World Championships (1905, 1921, 1922, 1933, 1954, 2010), 21 Pennants and this is the 24 playoff appearance in the teams history…overall, the Giants have gone 76-79-2 (win-loss-tied) in the postseason since 1900 (11-14 in League Division Series, 16-11 in League Championship Series and 49-54-2 in WS).

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BEATING THE ODDS…In their entire history – New York and San Francisco – the Giants had faced elimination in 19 different postseason series and Thursday’s Game 5 clinching win over the Reds was just the 2nd time in 19 series that the Giants won in which they were 1 game from elimination.

The Giants will enter the NLCS with 12 pitchers, two catchers, seven infielders and four outfielders.  The roster includes:

Pitchers (12)
41            Jeremy Affeldt                    LHP
40            Madison Bumgarner            LHP
18            Matt Cain                            RHP
46            Santiago Casilla                  RHP
70            George Kontos                   RHP
55            Tim Lincecum                      RHP
49            Javier Lopez                       LHP
50            Jose Mijares                       LHP
59            Guillermo Mota                    RHP
54            Sergio Romo                      RHP
32            Ryan Vogelsong                 RHP
75            Barry Zito                            LHP

Catchers (2)
28            Buster Posey                      C
29            Hector Sanchez                   C

Infielders (7)
13            Joaquin Arias                      IF
9            Brandon Belt                       IF
35            Brandon Crawford               IF
17            Aubrey Huff                        IF
48            Pablo Sandoval                  IF
19            Marco Scutaro                    IF
5            Ryan Theriot                        IF

Outfielders (4)
7            Gregor Blanco                     OF
12            Xavier Nady                        OF
16            Angel Pagan                       OF
8            Hunter Pence                      OF

Preacher Pence

Hunter Pence inspired the rest of the Giants with his inspirational speech before Game 3 of the NLDS and the Giants haven’t looked back.  Before the last 3 games the Giants have met in the dugout to remind each other what it means to truly be a team.  As Tim Flannery wrote, “For me, an old coach, it moved me like I have never been moved before … purity, real, passion, soul. The last of the holdouts this Pence. No arrows being shot, no hey look at me, no spotlight on me, no dance but “play for each other” … honor the game, the game honors you. Don’t know where and when it ends, but tonight I was proud to be together as a team, in a hostile environment, with just us. Brothers that play for the name on the front, not the name on the back.”  After Game 5 of the NLDS everyone was brought together again by Preacher Pence and the champagne flowed.

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