Score more runs than the Royals. The end.
Take 2: Score a bunch of runs early off of Jeremy Guthrie. The end.
Ok, ok, seriously though. Here the best and worst case scenarios:
Ultimate Worst Case:
This would essentially be a repeat of last night where Hudson goes down in flames early and the game gets away from the Giants before anything can really be done about it. Chances of this happening 1%.
Worst Case Scenario:
Let’s face it. No matter what this is the LAST game of a WEIRD season. This game is going to be close and it’s going to be weird. It’s going to make you feel things. Bad things like your worst break up, and good things like the birth of a child (or the last time the Giants won the World Series).
Tim Kawakami posited his theory on how the bullpen will shake down today. Check it out.
Along those lines, the worst case scenario is that Bochy has to start thinking about replacing Hudson early. The chances are good that this will happen. A sinkerballer usually needs to throw about 20 pitches to really get it going. It might take even more for Hudson to get that “good tired” thing going given that this is FREAKING GAME 7 OF THE WORLD SERIES and the adrenaline will be pumping. If he can get through the first 20 pitches without damages, he could go 5 or 6 innings. But the first part of the game will make you barf so many times.
The question of this game is when will Madison Bumgarner make an appearance. Best case scenario is that he never has to come in, but Bochy’s got a dilemma here. Put him in too early, and you might be left with a MadBum shaped vacuum when he comes out. Wait too long and the game might have already gotten away from you. Have I ever mentioned that I am glad I’m not the manager.
Ok, back to the worst case scenario:
- Hudson for 2+ innings.
- Bumgarner to clean up a mess and get through the 4th (I think this is too early for this night to end well)
- Petit/Lincecum to get through the 6th (If Lincecum is in this game something went really wrong)
- Affeldt for the 7th
- Romo/Lopez for the 8th
- Casilla for the 9th
The problem with this scenario is two-fold: Bumgarner is in the game too early, and too much rides on Petit and Lincecum to get big outs in the 5th and 6th.
Chances of this happening: 49%
Best Case Scenario:
Again, the ultimate best case scenario is the Giants jump all over Guthrie, Hudson cruises through 7 and we all breathe easy and go to bed early (chances of this happening 1%).
The more likely best case would look like this:
- Hudson for 5
- Bumgarner for 2
- Affeldt/Romo/Lopez/Casilla to get the final 6 outs
Chances of this happening: 49%.
The Giants need 2 home runs. That’s what I’m calling right now. Hit 2 home runs and they win.
The Giants need Posey’s moment of greatness.
You are going to hear, ad naseum, about how road teams can’t win game 7’s. Here are Grant’s thoughts. One interesting insight from that article: the road team usually got out to lead and still lost. Don’t read too much into that. The Giants need to get a lead.
The Giants really don’t want to be down once the game turns over to the final third. BUT, they’ve more than held their own against Kelvin Herrera. They’ve made him throw a lot of pitches. He’ll come in throwing gas and just try to throw it harder and harder if he gets in any trouble. Patience will pay off here. Let him get frustrated. A 102 mph fastball outside of the zone is just a really fast ball (ha).
Furthermore, the Giants finally got to Wade Davis in Game 5, and he’s the one guy of the big 3 I really fear. That’ll boost their confidence. Finally, Greg Holland is one of the 5 best closers in baseball, but he’s been wild and he hasn’t pitched much recently. Again, patience is the key. They can get to him. I’d feel so much better if those guys were pitching to keep the game close and not to protect a lead, but they aren’t invincible.
I’ll say it again: they can do this. They’ve done this. Not in the World Series, but they’ve done this.
They can do it again.
Score more runs than the Royals.