7-0 (83-70, 5.0 GB in NL West)
8-3 W vs. SD; 3-2 W vs. SD; 3-1 W vs. SD; 8-5 W @ COL; 9-1 W @ COL; 6-5 W @ COL; 12-5 W @ COL
Wow. What a week. 7 wins, cutting the lead in half, losing Bill Neukom, more injuries (Ross and Stewart), and Brian Wilson returns. No big deal. Just another week in Crazy Giants’ Land. Hard to say what is the most surprising/important development, but I think what’s been great is the way the team has been (forced) to go with some younger guys and they’ve responded. No matter what happens with this race, you have to root for Belt/Crawford/Pill/Surkamp to do well. It is only good for the organization if these guys can be successful. On to the awards…
Hitter of the Week:
Carlos Beltran had a GREAT week, Cody Ross was awesome, and even Aubrey Huff got in on the action. But I have to highlight Pablo Sandoval again because (a) he had a great week (.440/.481/1.120 with 4 home runs and 10 RBI), and (b) he plays the game like he realizes there are only a few weeks left and he just doesn’t want the season to end. I LOVE that. Play on Panda!
Pitcher of the Week:
Tim Lincecum had a great start this week (7 IP, 4 H, 2 BB, 6 K, 0 ER, W) but this award is about tomorrow as much as anything. See below for why this is the game of the year, but Tim needs to repeat this performance this week. It is simplistic to pin everything on Timmy, but as your best player goes (oftentimes) so goes the rest of the team. Get it done Timmy!
It’s an understatement to say that tomorrow night’s game is the biggest of the year. Every game since September 1 has been the biggest game of the year. The Giants still need to go 8-1 or 9-0 to have a realistic shot at pulling the playoffs out of a hat (no less than 91 wins gets them in). But it would do the Giants a world of good, both in the short-term and especially the long-term to beat Clayton Kershaw (and to have Timmy beat him head to head). Even if the Giants fall short of the playoffs, winning this game against their arch nemesis will be huge going in to 2012. If they lose tomorrow they still have a shot, but they will also head in to next year with a big old Kershaw hex hanging over their heads (so far this year in 5 starts Kershaw is 4-0 with 34.2 IP, 43 K, a 1.04 ERA, a 0.84 WHIP, and .183 BAA).