Oct. 28 (Bloomberg) -- The opening game of the World Series was supposed to be a showcase for pitchers Cliff Lee of the Texas Rangers and Tim Lincecum of the San Francisco Giants.
Instead, it turned into a display of offensive prowess and defensive shoddiness, as well as mental sloppiness, in an 11-7 Giants win that included 25 hits and six errors.
Juan Uribe’s three-run blast capped a six-run fifth inning, and Freddy Sanchez had three doubles and drove in three runs for the Giants last night at AT&T Park in San Francisco.
“It’s just baseball, this is a crazy game,” Sanchez said in a news conference. “Fortunately enough for us, we were able to come out on top.”
Lee gave up seven runs on eight hits in 4 2/3 innings. He had a 7-0 postseason record entering the game and allowed two runs in 24 innings as the Rangers defeated the Tampa Bay Rays and New York Yankees to win the American League pennant.
Lincecum got the win for the Giants, who are seeking their first World Series title since 1954, when they were based in New York. Lincecum allowed four runs on eight hits in 5 2/3 innings.
“They got to Cliff tonight, we didn’t get to Lincecum,” Rangers manager Ron Washington said in a news conference. “They just scored more runs than we could put up.”
The Giants had six doubles among their 14 hits. The Rangers committed four errors, including two by right-fielder Vladimir Guerrero, who only started 16 games in the outfield this season.
The six errors overall were the most in a World Series game since 1997, when Cleveland and Florida each made three errors in Game 3.
There also were mental mistakes. Lincecum forgot to tag a runner. The Rangers’ Ian Kinsler overran first base and was tagged out after hitting an infield single. Sanchez strayed too far from second base on a fly ball and was unable to get back to the bag.
“We faced a great pitcher tonight and he wasn’t quite on top of his game, and Timmy wasn’t quite as sharp, either,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said in a news conference. “It’s not quite the game we thought it would be.”
The winner of Game 1 has gone on to capture the championship in 64 of the previous 105 World Series, a 61 percent success rate.
The Rangers, playing in the World Series for the first time in the franchise’s 50-year history, have never won in 10 games at AT&T Park and haven’t defeated the Giants in eight games overall dating to 2001.
Game 2 Starters
Game 2 is set for tonight in San Francisco, weather permitting. The National Weather Service predicts a 40 percent chance of rain in the afternoon and a 50 percent chance of rain at night. The game is scheduled to start at 4:57 p.m. local time.
Matt Cain is set to start for the Giants against the Rangers’ C.J. Wilson. An off-day is planned for tomorrow before the best-of-seven series shifts to Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, Texas.
Aubrey Huff added three hits last night for the Giants, who became the first team to hold the Rangers without a home run in a game this postseason. Texas hit 17 home runs in 11 games en route to the World Series.
Uribe batted in two game-winning runs in the Giants’ 4-2 ouster of the Phillies in the National League Championship Series, including a solo home run in Philadelphia five days ago that clinched the National League pennant.
“We just clicked on all cylinders tonight, and it took that because they had some good at-bats, too,” Bochy said. “We’re not a team that tries to slug it out with other teams.”
Elvis Andrus led off the game for Texas by lining a single to left field and Michael Young walked. One out later, Guerrero had a run-scoring infield single that went off Lincecum’s left knee.
Texas made it 2-0 in the second. Bengie Molina singled and moved to third when Lee faked a bunt and then doubled to left-center. Andrus followed with a sacrifice fly.
The Giants tied the game in the third on an error by third baseman Young, a hit batsman, a run-scoring double by Sanchez that went just past Young’s glove and into the left-field corner and a run-scoring single by Buster Posey. The runs broke a 16-inning scoreless streak by Lee.
Giants’ Big Inning
Then came the big inning, in which the Giants sent 11 men to the plate.
Consecutive one-out doubles by Andres Torres and Sanchez, followed an out later by Cody Ross’s run-scoring single on Lee’s 100th pitch, gave the Giants a 4-2 lead.
Four pitches later, Huff knocked out Lee with a run-scoring single that made it 5-2. Uribe then greeted reliever Darren O’Day with his homer about 10 rows deep in the left-field stands.
The Rangers pulled within 8-4 in the sixth on a run-scoring double by Molina and a run-scoring single by pinch-hitter David Murphy that knocked Lincecum out of the game.
The Giants added their final three runs in the eighth inning on a run-scoring double by pinch-hitter Travis Ishikawa and run-scoring singles by Sanchez and Nate Schierholtz. Guerrero made his two errors in the inning.
The Rangers scored three runs in the ninth on Guerrero’s sacrifice fly and a two-run double by Nelson Cruz off Brian Wilson, the seventh Giants pitcher.
To contact the reporter on this story: Rob Gloster at AT&T Park in San Francisco at 1397 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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