Three potential heroes for SF Giants in huge Game 5 against the Dodgers

SAN FRANCISCO — If the Giants are to win Game 5 against the Los Angeles in the National League Division Series at Oracle Park, someone will need to seize the moment.

Someone like Will Clark in the NLCS in 1989 against the Chicago Cubs. Or Pablo Sandoval hitting a pair of home runs against Justin Verlander in Game 1 of the 2012 World Series. Maybe it’s someone more obscure, such as Edgar Renteria (2010) or Marco Scutaro (2012) or Cody Ross (2010).

On the mound, if the Giants are to move on, pitcher Logan Webb and closer Camilo Doval are prime candidates to be heroes. Catcher Buster Posey, who has caught 14 postseason shutouts and won three World Series rings, would surprise no one should he connect on a home run similar to the one that propelled the Giants to their 4-0 Game 1 win over the Dodgers.

Here are three other position players to consider:

Brandon Crawford

May as well ride their Most Valuable Player in 2021 to the promised land — or at least Saturday’s NLDS opener against the Atlanta Braves.

Crawford is a veteran of 10 playoff series and his overall batting average of .238 with two home runs and 19 RBIs is not overly impressive. But at age 34, Crawford is coming off his best year with 24 home runs, 90 RBIs and a .298 batting average. He homered in Game 1 and previous postseason heroics include a sacrifice fly in Madison Bumgarner’s Game 7 win against the Kansas City Royals in the 2014 series.

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The Pleasanton native has always had a flair for the dramatic, hitting a grand slam in his  major league debut against the Milwaukee Brewers in 2011.

And that’s just on offense. Crawford doesn’t have to hit to have an enormous impact on the outcome. His leaping snag of a line drive by Mookie Betts was one of the biggest plays in the Giants’ 1-0 win at Dodger Stadium in Game 3 and his play at shortstop is unmatched in franchise history.

To see Crawford deliver the big play on offense, defense or both would be a logical expectation.


— MLB (@MLB) October 12, 2021

Kris Bryant

May as well ride the hot hand. Bryant is the Giants’ leading hitter in the NLDS, hitting .462 (6-for-13) with a home run and two RBIs. He’ll have a left-handed starter to face in Julio Urias, against whom he has a .308 career average with a home run.

Bryant played on a 2016 world champion with the Chicago Cubs and is a veteran of 11 playoff series, hitting .247 with seven home runs and 18 RBIs. He won the MVP award that season, hitting .292 with a .292 batting average, 39 home runs and 102 RBIs.

Although he can run hot and cold as a hitter — Bryant struggled at the end of the regular season — he appears locked and loaded for a big blow in the playoffs.

And although Bryant has never really settled …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Sports


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