The 2012 World Series ended in impressive fashion with the San Francisco Giants completing a four game sweep at Comerica Park in Detroit and dominating the series with excellent fielding, timely hitting and stellar pitching. Even though there were only four games played, there were a number of excellent plays and individual performances to last a lifetime full of memories for fans of the San Francisco Giants. Here are the ten of the best plays, or succession of plays of the World Series.
10. In the final game of the 2012 World Series in the bottom of the eighth inning and a man on base, Giants reliever Jeremy Affeldt strikes out all three of the Tiger’s best hitters in succession: Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder and finally Delmon Young.
9. In the final game of the 2012 World Series, eventual MVP Pablo Sandoval singles in the third inning, giving him 24 hits for the postseason, one shy of the single postseason record.
8. In a tense final game and with the Giants down 3-1 entering the sixth inning, Giants catcher Buster Posey blasts a two-run homer into left field to tie the game and crushing any momentum that the home team had. Tiger’s slugger Miguel Cabrera also hit a home in the game, marking it the first time in World Series history that both reigning batting champions hit a home run in a game.
7. When reliever Sergio Romo recorded the final out of Game 3, the San Francisco Giants became the first team in a World Series to pitch back-to-back shutouts in 46 years and the first National League team to do so in 93 years. What made these two shutouts even more special was that they both were recorded on the road in Detroit.
6. With the Tigers trailing in the World Series 2-0, the Tigers hoped to have better luck. That opportunity came in the bottom of the fifth inning with the bases loaded and only one out. Giant’s pitcher Ryan Vogelsong got out of the jam by first striking out Quintin Berry and then inducing the Tiger’s most feared hitter, Miguel Cabrera to pop out.
5. What may later be simply known as “The Bunt”, Gregor Blanco laid down a bunt down the third base line and races to first base. Because the bunt was so perfectly executed, all the Tigers could do was hope that the ball would roll foul. Instead the ball died halfway towards third base, with three Tiger players standing by, resulting in a bunt single and loading the bases, which led to the game’s first run.
4. Marco Scutatro was the hottest hitter in the playoffs against the Cincinnati Reds, but his most important hit came in Game 4, when he flared a single to center field off the Tiger’s top relief pitcher Phil Coke to score Ryan Theriot for the game winning hit.
3. In another pivotal play of the 2012 World Series, the Tigers had a chance to take the lead in Game 2, when Delmon Young lined a double into the left field corner, sending Prince Fielder around the bases and rumbling for home plate. But great throws, first by left fielder Gregor Blanco to infielder Marco Scutaro who nailed the slow-footed, 275 lb. Fielder at home plate. The Giants went on to shut out the Tigers, 2-0.
2. Pablo Sandoval third home run in Game 1 put him in a select company of only four players in World Series history to hit three home runs in a single World Series game. What were just as impressive were his first two home runs off Detroit pitcher Justin Verlander, who is generally considered to be the best pitcher in the American League.
1. The number one play in the World Series? Of course it is the called third strike on Miguel Cabrera thrown by Sergio Roma to cap the sweep of the American League Champion Detroit Tigers 4-0. What made it even sweeter was the fact that Cabrera had one of the most impressive seasons in baseball history, winning the first Triple Crown in 45 years and the likely MVP of the American League.