Bumgarner Leads Giants Into Game 5
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RENEE MONTAGNE, Host:
The San Francisco Giants are on the verge of winning their first World Series since the team left New York and moved out west in 1958. The Giants beat the Texas Rangers four to nothing last night to take a three-to-one series lead. It puts Texas, a team in its first ever World Series, in the position of having to win three in a row, if it can. NPR's Mike Pesca reports from Arlington, Texas.
MIKE PESCA, Host:
There were sights to behold, from military flyovers to first pitches by two former presidents, both named George Bush. For Rangers fans, the greatest sight on Saturday was Mitch Moreland going yard with a three-run home run.
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PESCA: But there were no fireworks and no stirring musical cue provided by a Randy Newman score last night, just ESPN's Jon Miller describing the Giants catcher's contribution to what would be a four-to-nothing San Francisco victory.
MONTAGNE: Going back, Hamilton still going back, at the warning track, at the wall, it's gone, a home run for Buster Posey just to the right of the 404-foot marker.
PESCA: Buster Posey may very well be the National League rookie of the year, but even with that home run he wasn't quite the rookie of the game. That distinction belonged to Posey's battery mate, Madison Bumgarner, a 21-year-old left-hander who held the Rangers to three hits over eight innings. Then Giants closer Brian Wilson pitched a perfect 9th inning. After the game the hirsute hurler introduced yet another sense to the mix.
MONTAGNE: Then again, you know, even though we have a slight advantage right now, we still have to come in to tomorrow with the taste of blood and take down a victory.
PESCA: Wilson can taste blood, and like any good closer he professes a love of the hunt. But a couple of lockers over, fellow reliever Jeremy Affeldt was asked about yet another sense.
U: Are you smelling this thing, can you sense it?
MONTAGNE: I don't think anybody, right now, wants to try to smell anything.
PESCA: Smell has actually gotten a lot of attention in this series. When games were played in San Francisco the odor of marijuana, medicinal or otherwise, was detected throughout the stadium. Even the Rangers' center fielder Josh Hamilton said he could smell it. Over these last two games in Arlington, the smell was said to be nothing more than the sage in bloom, like perfume.
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PESCA: At this juncture it is fair to ask how much resilience there is deep in the heart of the Texas Rangers. For a team that's been clubbing the ball all year, their bats have suddenly turned shy. After game three, Rangers veteran Michael Young said he always had confidence in his team, and for that game the confidence was justified. At that time, Young laid out his definition of what constituted a must-win game.
MONTAGNE: I don't really buy the whole must win thing. It's a must win if the other team has three wins, then it's a must win.
PESCA: Mike Pesca, NPR News, Arlington, Texas.
MONTAGNE: And we're glad you're listening to this public radio station, one of more than 700 locally supported NPR stations in communities across America.
STEVE INSKEEP, Host:
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Correction Nov. 1, 2010
We incorrectly reported the score of Game 3 of the World Series. The correct score was Texas Rangers 4, San Francisco Giants 2.