Roy Hallady gutted out his first win against the Giants of the season (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
It was a pitchers’ matchup on a soggy San Francisco night when two of the most feared pitchers in baseball faced each other. This time it was Roy Halladay who got the breaks as both pitchers ground their way through batter after batter in a constant battle. The Giants took a 1-0 lead in the first inning but fell behind in the third inning on what could be best described as a “Lemony Snickets Series of Unfortunate events that included a flare single, a foul bunt that was ruled fair and an inexplicable by Aubrey Huff error that scored runs. This was added to when Cody Ross got himself thrown out at 3rd base on a fly out to Jayson Werth with only one out which ended the inning and a Giants’ threat.
Cody Ross tagged out by Placido Polanco (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)
Roy Halladay was forced deep into the count on almost every batter and struggled through much of the six innings that he pitched but benefitted by the grossly unusual third inning which like so many innings this post season continues to lead me down the evil path of replay with an “eye in the sky umpire” who is part of the Umpire crew and could reverse obviously missed calls. Not the silly NFL style replay but something that would take under a minute as the “eye in the sky” would have a direct link to the crew chief on the field. There have been few games this post season without some grossly distorted bad call and Baseball will have to face the music as if it were not for great performances that caused people to forget almost every team in the post season has seen bad calls against them that in some cases influenced how the games played out, as was the case on Thursday on Halladay’s bunt.
Tim Lincecum pitched well allowing two earned runs on 4 hits striking out 7 and walking only one in 7 innings work but was sabotaged by the bad call on the foul bunt as well as the costly error by Huff and the base running mistake by Cody Ross.
Jayson Werth added a needed insurance run in the top of the 9th to secure the win and the Phillies finally got a solid outing from their bullpen following Halladay’s departure at the end of the 6th inning.
The series now heads back to Philadelphia with the Giants up 3-2 with Jonathan Sanchez facing Roy Oswalt. This could be interesting because Oswalt pitched his normal practice day on Wednesday and then went into Wednesday’s game in the 9th inning surrendering the winning run as the Giants were able to hit him with impunity. With the exception of Werth’s home run Phillies hitters were still anemic with Ryan Howard going 0-4 and the team only mustering six hits.
This series will be good; I predicted the Giants in 7 but think that they will bounce back and take it in six on Saturday night.