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And That Happened: Monday’s playoff highlights

Oct 23, 2012, 5:40 AM EDT

St Louis Cardinals v San Francisco Giants - Game Seven Getty Images

Giants 9, Cardinals 0:  Baseball rope-a-dope? The Giants just can’t be bothered until an elimination game? A Cardinal choke? An 88-win team finally showing why it only won 88 games?  A Giants pitching staff showing everyone that they are the deepest and best in the game? I guess there is some truth in all of that. Whatever you credit for the outcome of the series, however, this Game 7 was an obliteration and it probably will stick with St. Louis for a long, long time.

For now it doesn’t matter, however, as the Giants are NL Champs and the Cardinals are going home to St. Louis, their ascent stalled one win short of the World Series for three straight games.  San Francisco will face Detroit. The matchup, on paper, looks excellent. A matchup of two teams with a long and rich history yet who have never faced one another in a World Series. Two great pitching staffs. Two likely MVP winners.  Bring. It. On.

I’ll be getting on a plane for San Francisco later this morning where, for the first time, HBT will be giving you on-site coverage of the Fall Classic.  Not that I’m gonna stop talking about Batman and bourbon and stuff. I’ll just be doing it from the World Series. Hope you come along for the ride.

  1. skerney - Oct 23, 2012 at 5:53 AM

    Enjoy the series and The City Craig. Going to be a great one. After the games, three words; Golden Boy Pizza. Yum.

  2. proudlycanadian - Oct 23, 2012 at 7:23 AM

    “The Giants win the pennant.” That brings back memories of my youth. When I was a kid, there were only Triple A teams in Canada, so Mays and The Giants became my team. Brings back memories of Cepeda, McCovey, Marichal, Alou and Stu Miller being blown off the mound in an All Star Game.

  3. proudlycanadian - Oct 23, 2012 at 7:41 AM

    Kind of surprising that it is October 23 and the World Series has yet to begin. On October 23, 1993, Joe Carter hit a home run, thus ending that World Series.Those extra playoff rounds sure stretch out the season.

  4. paperlions - Oct 23, 2012 at 8:13 AM

    Well….that sucked. I think Craig is right…there is some truth to many narratives. The Cardinals definitely adding in some choking. I’m not one to call failure choking often, but all of the flailing at pitches that obviously were never going to be strikes and all of the defensive mis-cues on easy plays looked like a group of players pressing for 3 straight games.

    The Giants played loose and took advantage of opportunities (and Scutaro was a stud all series). Good luck to them in the WS (as an NL guy, I always root for the NL team to win the WS).

  5. natslady - Oct 23, 2012 at 8:43 AM

    It wouldn’t have cost the Cards players a dime to say, “The Nats played us tough, they are a good team.” But no, they were full of arrogance and snide remarks about blood in the water. Well, “what goes around comes around.” Nats are coming out angry next spring and Target One will be that April series against the wild-card Cards.

    • natslady - Oct 23, 2012 at 8:46 AM

      And, most of all, congrats to the Giants. They sure looked beatable, but after the Zito game, they became superplayers. Fun to watch. Don’t have any chips in this pot, just hoping for a great Series.

      • stlouis1baseball - Oct 23, 2012 at 12:15 PM

        I am familiar with the article. But as Fearless said…they are cherry picked quotations.
        The Cardinals were simply re-telling the version of events that led up to everything.
        But alas…I guess it’s about each person’s individual perception.
        Regardless…I also hope to meet up with you guys in next years postseason.
        You have an exciting young club.
        Go NL!

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 23, 2012 at 9:47 AM

      Really Nats Lady? Where did this come from? I heard all kinds of Cardinals players congratulating the Nationals. No different than last night. No different than the Cardinals fans on this very blog today.
      Did you read this in the Washington Post? What gives cause’ this is the first I heard of it?
      Surprising coming from you especially.

      • natslady - Oct 23, 2012 at 10:43 AM

        http://www.csnwashington.com/baseball-washington-nationals/talk/cardinals-game-5-we-smelled-blood

        Here ya go. Didn’t hear anything bad or gloating from fans–I rode home on the Metro with several. This is players.

      • fearlessleader - Oct 23, 2012 at 11:01 AM

        Natslady, I completely understand your reaction. But the article you’re referencing cherry-picks the most inflammatory-sounding quotes from a much longer piece in the St. Louis Post, and the Post article was specifically a collection of recollections of the game 5 comeback from the perspective of the guys in the dugout as it happened.

        Plenty of Cardinals paid tribute to the terrific Nats team both during and after that series, but I don’t think it’s unusual or unkind to admit that in the heat of the moment, as they tried to climb out of a 6-0 hole, they were thinking “we smell blood” rather than “you have to give the other guys a lot of credit and I’m sure we’ll see lots more of them in the years ahead.”

        I, for one, would love to see the Cards and the Nats in the NLCS next year. How many days till spring training….?

      • natstowngreg - Oct 23, 2012 at 1:20 PM

        Agree w/fearlessleader. I never held the comments of some Cards’ players against them. The Cards’ experienced playoff participants were looking at opponents with little playoff experience (with very few exceptions), in the process of losing a big lead. Their reactions should not have been a big surprise.

        The Nats had the series won going into the 9th inning of Game 5. They failed to close the deal. Props to the Cards for coming back, but the onus is on the Nats to learn from the experience and do better in their next playoff appearance. Hopefully, next season.

  6. loungefly74 - Oct 23, 2012 at 9:34 AM

    Hum Baby!!!!!!

  7. sisqsage - Oct 23, 2012 at 10:48 AM

    Scutaro for President.
    He did build this.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 23, 2012 at 12:13 PM

      No doubt…he certainly ‘built it.” With a little help from Pablo, Vogie, Zito, etc…
      But Scutaro 2012 all the way!

  8. APBA Guy - Oct 23, 2012 at 12:39 PM

    That was a party! Even the crazy Hurricane Paul remnant weather added to, rather than detracted from, the whole atmosphere of celebration.

    I feel for St. Louis fans, but they won it all last year, and look to have a great team for the future also. Great run by the Cards.

    Even us A’s fans can pull for the Giants, especially as Detroit eliminated the A’s rather handily. Not that I have great hopes for the Giants against the Tigers pitching. But the Cards pitching is good also, and the Giants handled them, so we’ll see. It’s just that Tigers pitching has been better than good. As Tony might say, “It’s Grrrreat!”.

    San Francisco will be rocking on Wednesday. Can’t wait!

  9. ajcardsfan - Oct 23, 2012 at 12:40 PM

    Good luck to the Giants, keep the title in the NL and show that the DH is a bunch of tom foolery

  10. natstowngreg - Oct 23, 2012 at 12:57 PM

    The Giants had 6 playoff games that they absolutely, positively needed to win (3 in the NLDS, 3 in the NLCS).

    They won all 6. Truly remarkable.

  11. materialman80 - Oct 23, 2012 at 4:26 PM

    The Cards just seemed to run out of gas. They had a shot to nail it down in Game 5 and let it slip away. Sure hated it, but they played hard all year and got close. A lot closer then most.

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