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Tigers and Giants: Game #2 Prediction
Is the Game #1 outcome enough to affect Game #2?
Game #2 will set the tone for the rest of this World Series.
Game #1 of the 2012 World Series is in the books. It was what can be called "a drubbing."
Will the outcome be any different in Game #2?
Here is my prediction.
The factors which applied to Game #1 have been altered, but has the balance shifted enough to favor the Detroit Tigers in Game #2?
The fans are excited, confident, expecting a second win, if not "a sweep." Most are realistic to know the series will have its ups and downs, but confidence is building. Those fans attending Game #2 will expect to see the hot bats of Game #1 and the league championship game still pounding away. They will be anxious to see the San Francisco Giants' Pablo Sandoval blast out another homerun or two and Giants pitchers overpowering the Tigers' batters.
Could it happen?
Surely it could.
Is it likely?
It is less likely than it was in Game #1.
The Detroit Tigers as American League Champion have an enviable record, and a talented roster. So what went wrong in Game #1?
The answer is simple: everything!
Verlander, the Tiger's ace pitcher, expected to be dominant. His teammates had the same expectation. He and they were wrong. His pitches were hit and hit hard. The Giants got off to the early start they wanted, and never looked back.
Zito, the Giants' pitcher, was workmanlike, professional, and determined. He kept the Tigers' hitters looking like they were coming to Game #1 from a five days layoff. They were, and it showed.
Will the Tiger's lick their wounds and get on with the job? As the professionals they are, that is reasonable to expect, and they did come up with three runs late in Game #1 as they started to get their footing.
Here is how it looks to me.
The Giants need to be brought down a peg or two for the steady winds to be sucked from their sails. The Tigers need some early innings production to rebuild their confidence, and their pitching needs to benefit from what their coaches observed from Game #1.
All of the advantages the Giants had in Game #1 still exist (fans, familiar field and routines, family setting, and active bats.)
What has changed is psychological. The Giants can have become too confident. The Tigers can realize they can score and get a new opposing pitcher from time to time. More importantly, the five day layoff is over and it is baseball again, and the World Series.
The Tigers are not a great team when they are playing anywhere except in Detroit. This Game #2 is a must for them, if they are to set the stage for playing confidently back in Detroit. A Giants sweep is no longer out of the question. Tactical baseball was hardly needed in Game #1. The Giants played that game as a team and they loved what they did as a team.
Game #2 will be closer, much closer, and the Giants' fans will have to come prepared to watch a very different Tigers team do battle with the home boys.
If the Giants start to sense that they are disappointing their faithful fans, psychology will take over, and the Tigers can win even on the road.
My prediction: Tigers in a batting contest determined by errors. The margin of victory...by 3.
Copyright 2012 Demas W. Jasper All rights reserved.