Giants vs. Tigers: 5 Biggest Matchups in World Series Game 3

Mark MillerCorrespondent IOctober 27, 2012

Giants vs. Tigers: 5 Biggest Matchups in World Series Game 3

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    With two games of the 2012 MLB World Series in the rear view mirror, just a pair of wins separate the San Francisco Giants from a championship title.

    Strong pitching was the name of the game for the Detroit Tigers in the ALCS, but they've gotten a taste of their own medicine thus far in the Fall Classic, as the Giants rotation has been very impressive.

    Here are some matchups to look for this Saturday as the Tigers attempt to get back on their feet at Comerica Park.

Ryan Vogelsong vs. Tigers Offense

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    After seeing Ryan Vogelsong's strong performance in Game 6 of the NLCS, we know that he is comfortable pitching on a big stage. 

    Taking the mound on Saturday evening will raise the stakes even higher, as a win would put the Giants just one away from a World Series title.

    We've seen the Tigers offense shut down by Barry Zito and Madison Bumgarner so far in the Fall Classic, but there is good reason to think it could turn around this weekend.

    Facing lefties in both games to open the series, Detroit's lineup was at an immediate disadvantage. As a team, the Tigers batted more than 20 points higher against right-handed starters.

Anibal Sanchez vs. Giants Offense

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    Taking the mound in Game 2 of the ALCS against the New York Yankees, there was plenty of pressure on the shoulders of Anibal Sanchez, as the Tigers bullpen was taken to the limit just the night before.

    Sanchez would live up to the billing, throwing seven innings of three-hit baseball while striking out seven and walking only three, before giving way to Phil Coke to close out the 3-0 victory.

    As a former member of the Florida Marlins, Sanchez is no stranger to the Giants.

    He has made four starts against San Francisco since 2010, notching two complete game shutouts and a 1.98 ERA.

Delmon Young vs. Marco Scutaro

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    Delmon Young and Marco Scutaro may play different positions, and in reality won't match up against each other, but that doesn't mean they don't have anything in common as this series continues to take shape.

    Both men played vital roles in their team's success during their respective League Championship Series. While Scutaro has played better in the World Series to date, Young has shown that he is a much better player at Comerica Park, batting .285 at home versus .249 on the road. 

    Aside from helping their teams get to the Fall Classic, they both have individual motivation to play their best over the next week, as both will enter free agency this offseason and could parlay strong performances into higher paydays over the winter.

Giants vs. Comerica Park

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    The Giants comeback in the NLCS was certainly an amazing effort, but it pales in comparison to the effort they had to put forth in the NLDS, as they needed to win games on the road to overtake the Cincinnati Reds.

    If they plan on locking down the World Series title before heading back to AT&T Park, the Giants will need to showcase their abilities on the road once again.

    The change in venue will be most evident in the climate, where the temperature on Saturday could be in the low 30's—nearly half the temperature they played in for the first two games.

    Aside from the weather conditions, the Giants will also be contending with an antsy Tigers fanbase that's eager to help sway the proceedings in its favor.

Tigers vs. Mental Miscues

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    When you're fighting to stay alive in the postseason, every mistake made is magnified.

    Whether it's a botched throw home or waiting for a bunt to trickle foul, miscues can lead to runs for the opposing team. 

    The Tigers will have home-field advantage on their side, and knowing the ins and outs of Comerica Park should benefit them.

    If they hope to keep the series extended past this weekend, however, they'll need to minimize errors and take advantage of their own breaks whenever possible.