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WS Game 1: Rangers at Giants

Oct 27, 2010, 11:00 PM EDT

File photo by Mark Zuckerman / NATS INSIDER
AT&T Park hosts a classic pitching matchup in Game 1 of the Fall Classic.

And so it begins, this unlikely World Series. And what better way to begin than with one of the best pitching matchups anyone could cobble together for baseball's biggest event: Cliff Lee vs. Tim Lincecum. Both aces have been fantastic throughout the postseason, with Lee surpassing even that to put himself on the cusp of legendary status.

I don't expect either lineup to have much success tonight, because I believe both pitchers are going to be primed and ready for this stage and understand the importance of getting their team off on the right foot. Obviously, anyone can come back from a 1-0 deficit to win the series. But you do get the sense the winner of Game 1 is going to be especially well-positioned to go all the way, particularly if the Giants can become the first team in two years to beat Lee in the postseason.

No real shocks in either lineup. Vladimir Guerrero, normally Texas' DH, is starting in right field as expected. He may not be real fleet of foot at this stage of his career, but I sure wouldn't want to take my chances running on his arm. San Francisco, meanwhile, is going with a slightly reconfigured look, with rookie Buster Posey batting third, Pat Burrell cleanup, Cody Ross fifth and Aubrey Huff (usually the No. 3 hitter) down in the 6-hole as manager Bruce Bochy tries to put his best right-handed hitters higher up against Lee.

The first run in this game is going to be huge. Who knows, it might even be enough to prevail. I'll share my thoughts along the way, and as always, I encourage you to share yours as well…

THE 106th WORLD SERIES — GAME 1
TEXAS RANGERS at SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS
Where: AT&T Park

      Gametime: 7:57 p.m.

     TV: Fox Radio: WTEM-980 AM
     Weather: Mostly cloudy, 59 degrees

RANGERS
SS Elvis Andrus
3B Michael Young
CF Josh Hamilton
RF Vladimir Guerrero

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  1. Sec3EdgeOfMySofa - Oct 27, 2010 at 11:59 PM

    The game of Ball … at its most glorious.These are days of miracle and wonder.

  2. Sec3MyHummBaby - Oct 28, 2010 at 12:06 AM

    "But you do get the sense the winner of Game 1 is going to be especially well-positioned to go all the way"One lesson I learned very late–a baseball koan I'm still working on, if you like–is that each pitch, each AB, each game, is just as unconnected to the last as coin flips. We're so conditioned to think about momentum and narrative threads, and "destiny" (which can't be controlled, by definition, but nevermind that for now), but they really are unconnected.

  3. Sec3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 12:08 AM

    Livo would've had that…

  4. Sec3MySofa - Oct 28, 2010 at 12:12 AM

    bullet, dodged:I really didn't like the look in Posey's eyes on that first pitch after Lincecum brainlocked.

  5. Sec3MyHummBaby - Oct 28, 2010 at 12:16 AM

    I'm thinking the Giants might as well be hacking. No point running up Lee's pitch count–this smbch. will throw 150 tonight if he has to.

  6. Sec3MyHummBaby - Oct 28, 2010 at 12:30 AM

    and the man's a ballplayer…

  7. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 12:51 AM

    Mark, does it seem to you that the home team is a bit more likely to be tight in game one than the visitors?

  8. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:35 AM

    This is looking up. The Giants know they can get to this guy, and Lincicum is getting in a zone.

  9. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:37 AM

    Did I say Lincicum was in a zone? What's Freddy Sanchez in, then? Three for three, all doubles.and the captcha was "bushlob"

  10. JaneB - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:45 AM

    Oh please let me be still alive to see Nats play like this some October.

  11. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:52 AM

    Mark, you're a one-man reverse-lock."9:27 p.m. — Now we're seeing some top-notch pitching."

  12. SBrent - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:55 AM

    You and me both, JaneB! For this week I just have to root for the National League.

  13. Mark Zuckerman - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:56 AM

    Sec3: In my defense, I was referring more to Lincecum there than Lee, who I pointed out had labored in the third and fourth.But yes, I am the human reverse lock. :)

  14. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:58 AM

    Jane, I'll refrain from pointing out that the Nats could have had a large chunk of this Giants roster … whoops, my bad.

  15. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:59 AM

    OK, Mark, so you're off the hook for the "reverse" part …

  16. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:01 AM

    unless, of course …Nah, no way I'm saying it …

  17. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:03 AM

    wow, that Posey's got soft hands

  18. BQ - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:05 AM

    Mark, I love reading your updates. They are really fun, but not more than seeing Cliff Lee getting yanked out of the game live. WOW I did not see this coming, even against the Yankees. We were all talking about Rangers' offense and Giants' pitching but this came out of nowhere. I mean WOW.

  19. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:10 AM

    "Holy Cow."I believe the appropriate expression is "Bye Bye Baby!"And Lincecum is going to have more bruises than his catcher … generally not an indicator of dominance …and it's 8-4.

  20. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:12 AM

    Harry Carey did do a year or so in Oakland back in the Charley O days, though… so that's sorta close. Kind of.

  21. BQ - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:16 AM

    thank goodness the inning is finally over. that was scary. Rangers have given themselves a shot at coming back in this game though. Not exactly a pitcher's duel we all expected it to be.

  22. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:19 AM

    Maybe we should just start calling them the Senators. It's kind of like "Rangers" is their married name.

  23. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:22 AM

    Trivia question on Fox was "Who was the Giants pitcher when Willie Mays made that famous catch on Vic Wertz?" Don Liddle, but the great story is that Liddle was brought in for Wertz, and after that catch, came into the dugout and said, "Well, I got *my* guy."

  24. Anonymous - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:23 AM

    I don't think that Christy Mathewson has anything to worry about.

  25. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:49 AM

    I'll say it again: that's a play Adam Dunn does not make.

  26. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:53 AM

    This is for you, Jane: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7tX4rjHMBCQ

  27. JaneB - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:53 AM

    What, that tag out when Kinsler rounded second? He so does make that play!

  28. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 2:59 AM

    And again, Nolan Ryan picked the wrong week to quit drinkin.

  29. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 3:00 AM

    Man, it still hurts to see Vlad do that. Looked like Reggie in the All-Star game…

  30. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 3:01 AM

    "What, that tag out when Kinsler rounded second? He so does make that play!"The tag? Sure. The laying out to come up with the ball in the first place? Not in any remotely adjacent alternate universe.

  31. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 3:04 AM

    Star of the Game, I'm thinking Uribe.

  32. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 3:06 AM

    Man, get Guerrero out of there before he plays himself out of the Hall, already.

  33. Doc - Oct 28, 2010 at 3:25 AM

    Thanks Section 3 for Don Liddle's quote on getting the out, on Mays' catch of catches. I get a large chuckle out of it, every time I see it quoted.

  34. Section 3 - Oct 28, 2010 at 3:27 AM

    Doc, one of my favorite baseball quotes of all time.

  35. BQ - Oct 28, 2010 at 3:42 AM

    Oh BOY! Wilson sure knows how to make things interesting in a one sided game. That almost gave me a heart attack. Except that last inning, Giants pitching was good. It is still kinda hard to believe that Giants tagged Lee for more runs than all other offense put together in the postseason. Go Giants!!!

  36. Michael J. Hayde - Oct 28, 2010 at 3:55 AM

    BQ, you realize that this is cosmic justice for the Rangers, right? That bedraggled team with one (admittedly very, very good) ace crushed the New York Yankees, which upset the delicate balance of nature and thus angered the Baseball Gods.There will be no November ball; it'll be Giants in four, of that there is no doubt.

  37. JaneB - Oct 28, 2010 at 12:32 PM

    Section 3. that You Tube Video made me laugh out loud. At first I thought it had to be an error and then I heard me laughing before my registered what it meant. And do, if Dunn does end up elsewhere, I'll hold you to this! Thanks for this!!

  38. JaneB - Oct 28, 2010 at 12:33 PM

    Before my BRAIN registered. Sorry. So much for my brain this morning!

  39. natsfan1a - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:24 PM

    And *that* is why I don't do predictions. Turns out that Lee puts his pants on one leg at a time, just like the rest of 'em. :-)btw, Uribe was good and all, but credit Tony Bennett for the win. He sang "I Left My Heart in San Francisco" (which is played after every Giants win) *before* the game. I'm just saying…Go GIANTS!!

  40. FOTB - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:42 PM

    It looks like Cliff Lee is only immortal in the playoffs, not the World Series. While his playoffs numbers are off the charts, his WS numbers are average, at best: 20 2/3 innings, 11 earned runs. Take away his gem in Game 1 last year, and his numbers in his last two WS starts are awful: 11 2/3 innings, 11 earned runs. Have to admit it was nice to see him sitting in the dugout last night, with a dazed look on his face, not his usual obnoxious smirk.

  41. FOTB - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:47 PM

    P.S. From personal experience, I can attest to the fact that our beloved leader, Mark, truly is the human reverse lock. Call him before placing any real money wagers.

  42. natsfan1a - Oct 28, 2010 at 1:55 PM

    Oops, it was at the end of the first inning that Bennett sang. That's what I get for not watching the pregame show. I assumed that he sang it before the game. But still… :-)Reverse lock, reverse schmock. (No offense intended; I just like saying that, and I don't tend to do wagers, either.)

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