San Francisco Giants
In what very well could be the last game of the 2010 MLB betting season, the San Francisco Giants will try to win their first World Series crown in 53 years in Game 5 of the Fall Classic against the Texas Rangers on Monday night.
In a series that really lacked in all sorts of areas, the pitching performance of LHP Madison Bumgarner in Game 4 really could prove to be the outing that wins him World Series MVP in his magical rookie season. The Giants as a whole only faced three batters more than the minimum, as Bumgarner allowed just three hits and two walks in eight shutout innings of work. It was clearly the greatest pitching performance in this series, and it most definitely came from the most unlikely of sources. DH Aubrey Huff knocked a two run dinger as well to help out the cause, while Brian Wilson struck out a pair in a perfect ninth innings to seal the deal.
The Rangers are shell shocked right now, and they never stood a chance to get going on Sunday night. They only put five runners on base, two of which were immediately erased due to double plays. Texas also didn't look great on the mound, as both RHP Tommy Hunter and the shoddy bullpen allowed two runs apiece.
It's going to be up to RHP Tim Lincecum to close this series out on Monday night for the G-Men, and manager Bruce Bochy couldn't have asked to be in any better position than this. Lincecum allowed four runs for the first time since August 27th on Wednesday night's Game 1, as he gave up those four runs in just 5.2 innings of work. Little did we know, especially in that game, that that would be good enough to notch his third win of this postseason. For the playoffs, Lincecum is 3-1 to go with a hold in relief, and he has a 2.79 ERA. Opposing batters are still only hitting .196 against him, and he has 33 strikeouts to show for recording his 87 outs.
LHP Cliff Lee is making his home debut in the postseason with the Rangers, but unfortunately, it will probably be the last time he plays in a game with them as well. The southpaw might have sealed his own fate on Wednesday when he allowed seven runs, six of which were earned, in just 4.2 innings. Still, it's awfully hard to complain about a man that has really only had one bad start since the month of September, though it was awfully inopportune for that to come in the first game of the World Series. Still, Lee has 41 strikeouts and only has 45 total other outs recorded in the postseason, and his ERA (2.51) and BAA (.191) are still miniscule to say the least. His 41/2 K/BB ratio is only sure to improve, and is one of the best stats that a pitcher has ever had in MLB postseason history.
Lee could be absolutely fantastic on Monday night, but it isn't going to matter. If he makes even the slightest of mistakes, his team is probably said and done, especially with Lincecum looking to make amends for Game 1 as well. This is a fantastic price to be getting on a dominating team in this series. Bet on the Giants to close out the World Series on Monday.
World Series Free Pick: San Francisco Giants +155