I don’t know about you, but when I was growing up my mother said things like “everything happens in threes” Remember in my blog post about Tuesday’s game I quoted Casey Stengel? He said: “Now there’s three things you can do in a baseball game: You can win or you can lose or it can rain.” Baseball is all about threes. Think about it–3 strikes and you’re out, 3 outs and the inning is over, there are 3 bases-you can’t count home, it’s a plate, 3 outfielders, there are 9-a multiple of 3-players on the field, there are 9-again, multiple of 3-innings in a game, usually–not always, usually there are 3 games in a regular season series. Stengel recognized the symmetry of 3’s in baseball when he said what he said. Leave it to the GIANTS to make all 3 happen at once.
When we left off in Tuesday’s game recap the final score was 2-0, Cubs. After MLB upheld the GIANTS protest–the 1st time a protest has been upheld since 1986–it went from a final score to the score in the 5th inning. The game was scheduled to resume at 2:00 PM, Pacific with the Cubs coming up. But the game was delayed–of course–because of rain. When the game got underway, Yusmeiro Petit was pitching for the GIANTS and the 3 Cubs he faced in the 5th all struck out–swinging. The GIANTS came to the plate at the top of the 6th looking for redemption. After 2 quick outs, Adam Duvall hit a double. Arias was up next and he got a base hit, scoring Duvall. Petit pitched again in the 6th, struck out the 1st two–swinging. The 3rd Cub hit the ball right back to Petit. Side retired. Neither team scored in the 7th, 8th, or 9th innings, although the GIANTS came real close in the 9th. But you know what Frank Robinson said about close–horseshoes, hand grenades and all that. So to sum up–the GIANTS won the protest, lost the game, and it rained. Oh boy, did it rain.
About an hour later
The GIANTS dusted off the loss and headed back out to the field to take on the Cubs for the final game of the 3 game series. Each team had 1 win, so this was the rubber game of the match. The GIANTS final chance to win the series. And they came out swinging. Pagan led-off in the 1st with a base hit, advanced to 2nd after Posey drew a walk and came home on Pablo’s RBI single. Nice start. Then the Cubs took the field. And they blew it up. Bumgarner gave up a base hit to the lead-off hitter, got 2 quick outs, then gave up 2 back-to-back HRs. It had all the makings of an ugly outing. After 1, the score was:
GIANTS 1, Cubs 3
The GIANTS didn’t score in the 2nd. But they did in the 3rd, the 4th, and the 5th. And once more for good measure in the 7th. Here’s how the scoring went: Pagan had 2 hits and the run in the 1st; Pence–1 hit, 1 run; Posey–4 hits, 2 runs including a HR; Pablo–3 hits, 2 RBIs; Morse–SAC fly and an RBI; Arias–1 hit, 1 run; Bumgarner–1 hit, 1 RBI. The Cubs didn’t score after the 1st. Which reminds me–instead of the ugly outing I envisioned in the 1st (shame on me!!) Bumgarner pitched a great game. He went 7 innings, gave up 7 hits, 3 runs and 1 walk. He struck out 12. The final score was:
GIANTS 5, Cubs 3
That ends the weird and wacky Chicago series. I’m sure everyone is glad to be going. Spiders overran the announcers booth, August rainstorms caused extra rain delays, tarps with mechanical defects–it was starting to look like the Ten Plagues of Egypt–except there were only 3 plagues in Chicago. But that’s baseball–and in baseball everything happens in threes.