Tim Lincecum, Cody Ross Save Freedom, Vanquish Halladay
You may ask how I can come to the conclusion that Tim Lincecum is better than Roy Halladay. My basis for this isn’t found in the numbers. It’s not the pedigree. It’s definitely not based on who’s pitched more no-hitters. No, it’s completely irrational, biased, and quite frankly I’m OK with it. Between Timmy getting his second postseason win and Cody Ross single-handedly silencing Phillie fans with two swings of the bat, all told it ended up being a pretty amazing night.
To all the pundits out there who thought that the Giants would roll over for the Phillies, this game was a nice way of telling them that simply won’t do. Roy Halladay no-hits the best offense in the National League? No problem, we have Cody Ross. Chase Utley and Ryan Howard are two of the most feared left-handed hitters still left in the postseason? Well then Javier Lopez would like to have a word with you. Citizens Bank Ballpark is a joke of a bandbox ballpark where pop-ups to right field go out for home runs? Well…it pretty much is.
Giants fans were treated to yet another one-run ballgame full of tense moments and bearded flamethrowing closers who enjoy making things more interesting than they need to be. Lucky for us, the Phillies don’t have any Eric Hinskes or Rick Ankiels. No, they have real actual competent hitters who are expected to perform well. As such, it only makes sense that Giants pitchers have no troubles getting them out. It’s the scrap-heap shlubs hitting .220 in limited playing we have to be concerned with. When Ross Gload stepped up to the plate to pinch-hit, in my mind he was the scariest hitter in the 9th for that very reason.
With the win last night, it’s hard not to feel at least a little confident going into tonight’s game. And by confident I mean hopeful but still terrified that something awful is going to happen, which is the kind of confidence that Giants fans are all too accustomed to. Jonathan Sanchez has some serious ownership on the Phillies biggest bats (Howard, Werth, Utley, and Ibanez are a combined 7-59 against him), and he’s coming off of a spectacular outing against the Braves at Turner Field where he was Hinske’d out of a win.
Up here in Seattle, Giants fans are continuing to appear out of the woodwork. Every game I’ve had the pleasure of watching at Auto Battery out in Capitol Hill has seen more and more fans show up to scream obscenities at a 44-inch hi-def TV. Last night was the culmination of all this, with nothing short of 25-30 Giants faithful packed into the corner. To any Giants fans and sympathizers in Seattle, know that you don’t have to suffer through Joe Buck and Tim McCarver alone; come out, have a hot dog and a beer (or four depending on who’s pitching), and experience the torture of the playoffs in good company.
A lengthier write-up will follow tonight’s game, so stay tuned for that. In the meantime, enjoy the remaining stress-free hours of your Sunday.