Fans panic too early, but Giants rally late 

click to enlarge The Giants' Gregor Blanco scores on Buster Posey's sixth-inning single against the Cardinals in Game 4 of the NL Championship Series. - DAVID J. PHILLIP/AP
  • David J. Phillip/AP
  • The Giants' Gregor Blanco scores on Buster Posey's sixth-inning single against the Cardinals in Game 4 of the NL Championship Series.

By the third inning Wednesday night, Twitter was full of ridiculously expressed angst.

Ryan Vogelsong, fairly well-established as one of the best postseason pitchers in history, had been knocked around in Game 4 of the National League Championship Series, and rolling through my feed was further proof that for some fans, it's not what you've done for me lately but what you're doing for me THIS VERY SECOND, dammit!

People were apoplectic, suggesting that Giants manager Bruce Bochy, well-established by now as one of the greatest handlers of a pitching staff in history, had screwed the pooch by starting Vogelsong.

At second base, Joe Panik. At the keyboard, Joe Panic.

Were these people not watching the first eight games of the Giants' latest improbable postseason run? If they had been, they'd have known better.

But hey, the more you freak out about an early deficit, the better the comeback feels. And come back the Giants did, moving to within one more Madison Bumgarner gem of a remarkable third World Series appearance in five years.

Having fallen behind big early, the Giants had to actually do some of their own work to get back into the game. You know, like getting hits and driving in runs and stuff. And they did.

But sure enough, come the sixth inning, after San Francisco had pulled to within a run at 4-3 while Yusmiero Petit was stabilizing things in relief of Vogelsong, that familiar, peculiar postseason mojo reared its beautifully ugly head.

A couple of bad throws and a bad decision helped the Giants even things up and take the lead on a pair of infield grounders to first base, and then came that rarest of sights for this squad: a legitimate RBI knock with two outs, padding the newfound lead.

Twitter didn't know what to do with that last development. One of my funnier followers direct-messaged me: "Dude, what do they call those again?"

They call them clutch hits, and in the most this-makes-sense moment of this nonsensical postseason for the Giants, it was Buster Posey doing the honors.

From there it was all about the bullpen, which Bochy again managed beautifully. It wouldn't be the Giants in October without the tying run coming to the plate with two out in the bottom if the ninth, of course, but Santiago Casilla did what Giants closers do in October.

That it was Matt Holliday who froze with the game on the line made it that much sweeter.

It would have been sweeter still were it A.J. Pierzynski, but let's not get greedy. And let's make a pact.

If MadBum struggles early Thursday night? #BackAwayFromTheKeyboard.

Mychael Urban, a longtime Bay Area-based sportswriter and broadcaster, is the host of "Inside the Bigs," which airs every Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon on KGMZ "The Game" (95.7 FM).

About The Author

Mychael Urban

Mychael Urban

Bio:
Mychael Urban has been covering Bay Area sports for 25 years and has worked for MLB.com, Comcast SportsNet Bay Area and KNBR (680 AM).
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