The Detroit Tigers and San Francisco Giants renewed their hostilities on Wednesday in the 108th edition of Major League Baseball’s World Series. Each team went into the series on a positive note. The Tigers had won five straight games, and the Giants came fresh from a three-game comeback against the reigning World Series champions, the St. Louis Cardinals. The strength of the Detroit Tigers lies in their starting rotation and their minuscule 1.02 ERA through two rounds of competition. The Tigers’ bullpen has been equally outstanding; besides Jose Valverde’s and Joaquin Benoit’s efforts, the Tigers have yet to surrender a run. By comparison, the Giants’ staff does not match up, though the team does have a lot of talent. For example, Ryan Vogelsong and Matt Cain are a potent duo at the top of the rotation, having earned victories in four of seven starts. However, for the Giants to be successful they need improved play from Madison Bumgarner, who— in two playoff starts—has surrendered an uncharacteristic 10 runs. In the bullpen, the results have been more encouraging for the Giants: Sergio Romo, Tim Lincecum, Jeremy Affeldt, Santiago Casilla, George Kontos, and Javier Lopez have surrendered a combined five earned runs in 40 innings pitched. Unlike his Tigers counterpart, closer Sergio Romo has converted on all of his save opportunities this post-season. “The Giants have no answer for the Tigers’ rotation of [Justin] Verlander,  [Anibal] Sanchez,  [Max] Scherzer, and [Doug] Fister, or the middle of their lineup,  [Miguel] Cabrera, and [Prince] Fielder,” commented Moiz Badar, an economics graduate and Tigers fanatic. On offence, the Tigers have under-performed to the tune of a .716 OPS (down from .757 in the regular season). The team’s struggles are due in large part to Fielder’s difficulties (.558 OPS). For the Tigers to be fully effective, Fielder must perform to the utmost of his ability and protect MVP candidate Miguel Cabrera. The Giants have also been underperforming (.671 OPS), but after RISP, that number increases to .768 OPS, the highest mark among qualified teams. “On paper, the Tigers have a more talented squad, but they haven’t played since last week,” said Adam Ali, a second-year economics student. “and as we have seen in the past, a long rest can lead to rust.” As of press time, the Giants are leading 3–0.

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