After the lines were chalked, and the players on both teams stood on the baselines during the singing of The Star Spangled Banner, we were finally ready to play some meaningful ball.
The Giants were taking the field with high hopes and expectation of sniffing that ever elusive October, while the Astros look to be in rebuilding mode. Taking the field for The Giants, were two new faces, Aubrey Huff the big lefty was penciled in at 1st base and hitting out of the four whole, and big free agent acquisition Mark Derosa penciled in at left field and in the five whole.
With that said the Giants assessed their hitting woes of 2009 to the best of their abilities and were ready to start the conquest to October.
It was only fitting that Aaron Rowand swung at the first pitch to kick off the 2010 campaign. After a long cold off season of the Giants drilling patience at the plate into their heads, Rowand goes free swinging. However the Giants new and improved offense showed it's signs early. In the second inning, Huff and Derosa both reached base to start the inning off, and Big Money Molina showing us already that we don't call him that for nothing.
Molina singled to the wall in left field scoring Huff and moving Derosa too third. John Bowker follows that up with an single scoring Derosa and moving Molina to third. Uribe is the next up and he hits a sac fly deep enough to right field to score big Bengie. Last year that crucial sac fly was tough to come by.
The Giants go up early 3-0 after the second inning giving the Cy Young Tim Lincecum room to breath and that's when he goes to work. The Freak goes 7 innings strong of four hit ball and fanning 7 Astros in the process, not one walk.
In the top of the 8th to give that bullpen some more insurance runs, Mark Derosa sends one opposite field into the first row of stands in right field hitting his first homerun as a Giant in an impressive show of strength.
The Giants then get to show off their bullpen which is deemed as one of the better pens in the league. Sergio Romo comes in and throws a scoreless eighth inning striking out one. Medders comes into the game to wrap up the ninth but struggles only recording one out and giving up two runs. Bochy takes the ball from him and hands it to Brian Wilson who shuts the door getting the last too men in order.
The Giants show much to be optomistic about after the first game of the season, Timmy shined like usual, and the bats came alive when needed and scored plenty of runs for this staff.
Game two brought Barry Zito too the hill. I know there were tons of Giants fans out there waiting in angst to see how Barry would come out of the gates in 2010. To every ones very pleasant surprise, Zito threw the ball exceptionally well, mixing speeds and dropping in the deadly hook. In six innings of solid shut out work, Zito K'd five.
It only took the Giant hitter one inning to collect all the runs they would need. Huff laced a single to right scoring Edgar Renteria. Then Bengie hit a sac fly scoring Pablo from third on a play at the plate in which Pablo had to dive to avoid the tag by Humberto Quintero. Then in a big two out spot with a runner in scoring position, Juan Uribe singled to right scoring Derosa to cap off the three run inning.
Waldis Joaquin, Dan Runzler, and Sergio Romo then each pitched two thirds of an inning of scoreless ball to setup Brian Wilson who pitched a scoreless, hit-less ninth with one strikeout. Game two seemed like a Giants game we will be getting used to seeing this year, one inning of run producing then shut out ball by the pitching staff.
With the Giants already off to a good start for 2010, they looked to make it a great start, sweeping the first series of the season... on the road. They didn't sweep one series on the road all of last season. All star Matt Cain took the hill for the Giants looking for the sweep and the early momentum.
The Giants struck early scoring three times in the first three innings. They added another run in the top half of the 7th, but in the next half inning the Astros struck for three, resulting in a 4-4 deadlock.
The tie didn't last long though. In the very next half inning the Giants struck for 2 runs then another 4 in the ninth as they batted around. Mota then closed out with a scoreless hit-less ninth to wrap up the first road sweep in over a year, and a promising start to a promising year.
Next stop... 24 Willie Mays Plaza for the Giants home opener. Strap on your seat belts folks, I have a feeling this year is gonna be a hell of a ride.