Originally written October 23, 2012 on 5TH QUARTER MAGAZINE:
The World Series is finally upon us, and the San Francisco Giants will be taking on the Detroit Tigers. So who will be the champion when all is said and done? Let’s break down both teams and see who has the advantage. Pitching The San Francisco Giants have a strong starting rotation that has only allowed 1 run over the last 3 games, but at the beginning of the NLCS they had some shaky starts. Madison Bumgarner and Tim Lincecum were both chased off the mound in their respective starts. Ryan Vogelsong has been stellar thus far and Matt Cain bounced back nicely last night to help the Giants secure the pennant. The Detroit Tigers’ starting rotation absolutely dominated the Yankees in the ALCS and only gave up two runs in their 4 game sweep. But the big advantage the Tigers have in former Cy Young and AL MVP Justin Verlander. Verlander is 3-0 in the postseason and is well rested since they Tigers haven’t played in almost a week. He can easily see the mound 2-3 times depending on how long the series lasts. Advantage: Tigers Offense All signs should point to the Tigers in terms of offense. They have triple crown winner and AL MVP favorite, Miguel Cabrera who is backed up by slugger Prince Fielder. Also, the Tigers lit up C.C. Sabathia in game 4 of the ALCS to wrap up the series. But have you seen the Giants recently? San Francisco’s offense is absolutely on fire and has scored 20 runs in the last 3 games. Marco Scutaro has led the charge and won the ALCS MVP after posting a .500 batting average with 20 hits in the series. As surprising as it is to say, the Giants’ offense has really been what has carried them to the World Series. Advantage: Giants Rest The Tigers have been idle for nearly a week now, and it’s tough to say whether that will be an advantage or disadvantage. The offense could be a bit rusty after all of the time off, but the rest could help their rotation. As I stated earlier, Verlander will probably be able to have at least 2 starts and possibly a 3rd if he’s needed. The Giants, on the other hand, will only have a day of rest after a gruesome 7 game series with the St. Louis Cardinals. But San Francisco is also riding a huge wave of momentum. Their offense is red hot right now and expect the hometown fans to be loud at AT&T park. Advantage: Toss up  Wrap Up At the end of the day, it’s hard to give either team the edge here. The Tigers have been more dominant throughout the playoffs, but the Giants have won 6 elimination games and have home field advantage. Both teams have been great on offense and have solid rotations. But when all is said and done, I think the Tigers can out-slug the Giants and Detroit’s starting pitching will be refreshed after a week of rest. Winner: Tigers
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