With the 2010 World Series all lined up with the Texas Rangers squaring off against the San Francisco Giants, it looks like small ball is the way to go! Although the Rangers have enough big bats in their lineup to make it seem like small ball on crack (insert Ron Washington joke here). Let’s break down the Giants and Rangers as they will face off in the 2010 World Series.
The Rangers have the edge in offense with their powerful lineup which showcases ALCS MVP Josh Hamilton along with Michael Young, Ian Kinsler, Vladimir Guerrero, and Nelson Cruz. As a team, they hit .304 against the New York Yankees, smacked nine home runs and also stole nine bases. Where they will surprise you is their speed and aggression along the base paths, and that starts with Elvis Andrus. On the year Andrus stole 32 bases and added four more against the Yankees. Hamilton added three swipes of his own to go with his four home runs and seven RBI.
The Giants as a team batted .244 against the Philadelphia Phillies in the NLCS and scored 19 runs in six games, or half the total of the 38 runs the Rangers put up. NLCS MVP Cody Ross put up a .350 average with three home runs and five RBI. Juan Uribe only had three hits for the Giants in the NLCS, but one was the clinching home run off Ryan Madson in game six, and also had a game winning sacrifice fly to put the Giants up three games to one.
Pitching on the other hand would be in the Giants favor. Tim Lincecum is one of the premier pitchers in the league and Matt Cain would be a number one on most other teams. Jonathan Sanchez can be hit or miss and Madison Bumgarner was pretty serviceable as the number four starter. Barry Zito, oh wait, he was left off the roster, nevermind. The Giants pull ahead with their bullpen. Javier Lopez had a great NLCS and closer Brian Wilson saved three of the Giants’ wins (not to mention gives awesome interviews).
The Rangers have their own top tier ace in Cliff Lee who seems to shine when the lights are brightest. Lee two hit the Yankees in the ALCS to help put the Rangers up two games to one as they never looked back. C.J. Wilson is a decent number two, but the edge clearly goes to Matt Cain. After Wilson is Colby Lewis who was lights out against New York, winning both starts and posting a 1.98 ERA. Tommy Hunter didn’t do too well as the number four starter, but with their bats, Texas is always in the game. If the Rangers can safely bridge the gap to closer Neftali Feliz, they will be in good shape as their bullpen can be a bit shaky.
This World Series will be fun to watch as both teams play great fundamental and situational baseball. Both teams have the pitching to keep game close, which will make this World Series one to remember!