When Cardinals outfielder Carlos Beltran strained his left knee running out a double play ball in the first inning of game 3 of the NLCS, Giants fans were relieved to see one of the Cards best hitters be hobbled and have to leave the game. Unfortunately little known Cardinals utility man Matt Carpenter would quickly make Bay Area fans miss the site of Beltran's face as he would hit a 2 run 421 foot blast off Matt Cain in the bottom of the third inning. "It was definitely a surprise," said Carpenter. "I didn't even realize Carlos had hurt himself; there was really no thought process. I was in the game before I had time to think about it."
The Giants who came in 70-22 when scoring first, including the postseason, took the lead in the third on Pablo Sandoval's run-scoring groundout after leadoff hits by Angel Pagan and Marco Scutaro who showed no signs of injury after leaving game two in the 5th inning because of a hard slide into second by Matt Holiday.
Giants ace Matt Cain lost for the second time this postseason allowing three runs on five hits in 6.1 innings of work. The biggest eye soar on the day was not just the three and a half hour rain delay in the 7th that turned players and fans alike into soggy prunes but also the fact the Giants were 0-7 with runners in scoring position.
Cardinals closer Jason Motte would record the first 2 inning save of his career on what was from most accounts a very lackluster night for Giants batters.
The Giants snapped their five-game road winning streak in the postseason but will look to bounce back tonight as Tim Lincecum will revive his roll as starter against Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright. "He's a guy we want out there. He's been throwing the ball well," Bochy would say of Lincecum. "We've got to bounce back."
That's a fine looking race car!
Good luck to the Deuces Wild Race Team out of Manteca, competing today at the Madera Speedway for the Lucas Oil Summertime Horsepower Nationals.
The Lucas Oil Modified Racing Series, presented by 1 800 Loan Mart, will be bringing their thunder making, ground shaking, brand of open wheel intensity to the fastest one third mile in the west, the Madera Speedway, this Saturday night, July 28th.
The series' MAV TV-American Real 75 will live up to its name by treating Madera Speedway fans to a full 75 green flag laps. This series does not count yellow flag caution laps. A full field of 24 modifieds are expected to be on hand for this race.
The MAV TV-American Real 75 has a $10,000 purse with $1,500 going to the race winner.
The race winner will also receive a gift certificate for a set of high quality heads from Dart Machinery LLC.
The race winner will also collect two additional championship points from the E 3 Spark Plugs Bonus Program.
Drivers are guaranteed a minimum of $300 for just taking the initial green flag for the MAV TV-American Real 75.
During the course of the evening drivers can earn the series long standing bonus incentives which includes $100 and two bonus points for winning the Optima Batteries Hard Charger Award, $100 and two bonus points for setting the Budweiser Fast Time in qualifying, $100 for winning the GEICO Clean Pass Award and $200 for winning the MAV TV-American Real six lap trophy dash.
The Sunoco Winner's Circle Program, which normally pays $200 in tow money to drivers in points positions one through ten, will be doubled, $400, for the Madera race.
The Speedco Tow Money Program, normally $150 to drivers in points positions 11 through 20, has also been doubled, $300, for the Madera race.
American Cagefighter out to Central California to capture another installment of 559 Fights. It was a stacked card of amateur mma and the ACF Cameras were there to capture it all!
American Cagefighter has been covering the world of mixed martial arts with a focus on California for the last 2 years. ACF provides dynamic video highlights and original programming from the best regional mma action around.
Double Olympic Champion Rebecca Adlington has entered her final training phase as she prepares to defend her 400m and 800m freestyle titles in London next month.
The Mansfield swimmer has been in excellent form all year. She qualified for Team GB in impressive style at the British Gas Swimming Championships at the London Aquatics Centre in March, setting the fastest time in the world this year for the 800m freestyle with a mark of 8:18.54. She's also ranked second fastest in the world for 400m freestyle with a time of 4:02.35 set in March.
In the Barcelona leg of the Mare Nostrum series on 2nd June, Adlington won gold in the Women’s 800m Freestyle with an assured performance and a championship record of 8:19.86.
Adlington will compete in the 200m freestyle at the British Gas ASA National Championships in Sheffield on 20th June where she is expected to set a time to put herself in contention for a 4x200m freestyle relay spot. She has already ruled herself out of competing in the individual event in London.
Though Britain's top swimmer has secured both her individual slots for London, there are still 14 places up for grabs in 11 different swimming events at the British Gas ASA National Championships.
Adlington has been chatting about her hopes and preparations ahead of this summer's challenge, the contenders in the final battle for qualification in Sheffield and who to watch London next month.
There's something about this 2012 edition of the San Francisco Giants that just seems magical and puts a permanent smile on my face. They just seem like a bunch of cool dude's, the type of guys you invite over for a Sunday BBQ. Maybe it's the fact that they survived and thrived during 6 elimination games during this postseason, or maybe it's the timely hitting and outstanding pitching, maybe it's the fact that a late season acquisition named Marco Scutaro would lead this team on it's journey and end up being the NLCS Most Valuable Player, or maybe it's seeing Brian Wilson in the Dug-Out cheering on his teammates as his majestic burly beard swayed in the cool Bay Area breeze. Well it's all of this and then some that makes this team so special. They have the IT factor, and I can't wait to see what they do next!
Game 7 was over early as the Giants who already leading 2-0 would put up a 5 spot in the bottom of the third with a Hunter Pence double to center field that would score Marco Scutaro and Pablo Sandoval, Buster Posey would score on an error from center fielder Jon Jay. Brandon Crawford then grounded into a fielder's choice to short stop scoring Pence and moving Brandon Belt to third and Gregor Blanco to second. Angel Pagan would knock in Belt and the score sat at 7-0 heading to the 4th and remain that way as Matt Cain, J. Affeldt, S. Casilla, J. Lopez, and S. Romo would keep the Cardinals shut down all night not allowing a run. The Giants would tack on 2 more runs in the 7th and 8th innings as the final score would read 9-0 in what was nothing less then a total route of the defending World Series Champs.
Marco Scutaro tied an LCS record as he posted 14 hits in the series with 6 multi-hit games on way to winning MVP honors. As the game ended the rain began to pour as fans and players alike would celebrate soaked and ecstatic. "The rain never felt so good," Scutaro said. "We're going to the World Series, this is unbelievable." Closer Sergio Romo would embrace Buster Posey as fireworks blasted through the night sky illuminating McCovey Cove as players rejoiced on the field. "It's just very fitting the way everything has gone for us this season," Romo said ending in the rain. "The ups and downs, the injuries, the personal issues, whatever. What a ride for us all. It's very, very fitting that it rained right there."
Game 1 of the World Series will be on on Wednesday and be played at AT&T Park. Last year's Cy Young Award winner Justin Verlander will start for the Detroit Tigers. Verlander didn't match his numbers from 2011 this year but is still considered by most the best and most dangerous pitcher in Major League Baseball. If that wasn't enough the Giants will also have to contend with 2012 triple crown winner Miguel Cabrera. Cabrera became the first triple crown winner since Carl Yastrzemski to win it in 1967. He joined such notable players as Mickey Mantle, Lou Gehrig, and Ty Cobb to win the award. The Detroit Tigers finished the regular season 88-74 winning the AL Central. They beat the Oakland A's 3-2 in the ALDS and then dismantled the New York Yankees 4-0 in the ALCS. Giants skipper Bruce Bochy has yet to name a starter but it will most likely be either Madison Bumgarner or veteran Barry Zito starting game 1.
It was a night of euphoria and bliss for players and fans alike in the bay Area and Central Valley, but now the Giants will need to turn their cheek to the exuberance of the NLCS and focus completely on the Detroit Tigers and game 1 of the World Series. Let the "torture" begin, I know I'm ready, are you?