Giants 4, Tigers 3 (box score)
Well, they put up some semblance of offense, which is all we were asking for during the previous two games, but three runs wasn’t enough to stave off the Giants and avoid the series sweep.
The Tigers came back twice in the game. The Giants got on the board first in the second inning when back-to-back extra base hits by Hunter Pence and Brandon Belt pushed across one run, but the Tigers answered the next inning when Miguel Cabrera awoke from his slumber to poke a two-run home run to right field. Detroit would hold the lead until the sixth inning when a Buster Posey two-run blast put the Giants back ahead by one, but Delmon Young responded in the bottom half of the inning with a solo homer of his own to tie the game.
The seventh, eighth, and ninth innings came and went with little excitement – save Omar Infante suffering a fractured hand while getting hit with a pitch in the ninth – and the game moved to extra innings.
Ryan Theriot led off the inning with a single, because why wouldn’t he? That’s just the way things have gone. San Francisco predictably bunted him over to second base, but Angel Pagan followed with a strikeout to leave things up to Marco Scutaro. And since the script writes itself, Scutaro was able to single to shallow center field to drive in the go-ahead run. Many Tigers fans across the internet were up in arms that Jackson didn’t dive for the ball, but I think he would have been well short of the ball and Scutaro would have ended up on third base. Pablo Sandoval ended the inning with a groundout to Miguel Cabrera at third, but Detroit was in a dire position heading into the bottom of the ninth.
The Tigers had the top of the lineup due to hit, but Sergio Romo struck out the side in order – including freezing Cabrera for strike three on a fastball down the middle to end the game – and the Giants claimed the crown with little in the way of late-inning drama from the Tigers.
The Tigers were one of the last two teams standing — and there’s something to be said for that — but they’ll have to console themselves with their division crown and American League pennant while waiting for another opportunity next season. Those aren’t horrible consolation prizes, but it’s difficult to take solace in those achievements when the season ended so harshly.
The offseason awaits.