SAN FRANCISCO The Giants are 27 outs from the WorldSeries. They know the St. Louis Cardinals will not yield any of them without afight.
The Giants might have a streak of five win or go homevictories in this postseason, but the Cardinals, defending World Serieschampions, have won six consecutive elimination games over the last two years including that storm of a comeback from a 6-0 deficit on the road to knock outthe Washington Nationals in their NL Division Series.
INSTANT REPLAY: Giants 6, Cardinals 1
But say this: The Giants are a very, very confident team.
Were what, five wins away from winning it all? said TimLincecum, who will be available in the bullpen should Matt Cain falter in Game7. I dont feel the emotion has changed at all. We know what we have to do.Its about rising to the occasion and putting on a show.
Said Angel Pagan: Were ready for tomorrow. I hope I cansleep, but thats all I can tell you. Im very, very confident in what weregoing to do tomorrow.
Said Sergio Romo: Were one win away from the World Series.What a feeling it was in 2010. Yeah, I want to get there again. I imagine wecan. This is a game where you have no idea whats going to happen next. But Iexpect this team to show up tomorrow and fight and survive.
RATTO: Romo, Giants continue to dispel myths
Pagan was asked which lineup, the Giants or Cardinals, wasbetter.
Im not going to say whos better, he said, diplomatically.
Whos going to be better in Game 7?
Us, Pagan said. Believe it.
Cardinals left fielder Matt Holliday did not watch Game 6from the bench. Thats because he went for an MRI exam on his lower back duringthe game, reported Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said Hollidays back gotworse, not better, during the game.
That screams doubtful for Game 7, doesnt it?
While were on the subject of the Cardinals andvulnerability
It sent a megaphone-loud message when Matheny kept ChrisCarpenter in the game to hit for himself in the third inning while the Cards alreadytrailing 4-0. Obviously, Matheny was saving all hisbullets for Game 7.
You know this is a team that believes it can come back inany game. There is a vacant ballpark in the Beltway to prove that. But perhapsall that ammo preservation also speaks to the Cardinals confidence, or lackthereof, in Lohse. The right-hander walked five and allowed seven hits over 5 23 inningsin Game 3. Yet the Giants only scored one run against him in a 3-1 loss atBusch Stadium.
We let him off the hook, one Giant told me. Thats notgoing to happen again.
One of the most important at-bats in Game 6 belonged toPablo Sandoval, and not just because his single up the middle knocked in theGiants fifth run.
His at-bat came immediately after Ryan Vogelsong scored fromfirst base on Scutaros double. Not only did Sandoval extend the inning, but hefouled off a number of pitches while working a 10-pitch at-bat.
Vogelsong surely appreciated that. He was asked if his focuschanged after Scutaros double made it a 4-0 lead.
Well, I was looking for the oxygen first, said Vogelsong,who sat next to Scutaro in the interview room.
Couldnt breathe. Sorry, brother, Scutaro replied.
You can do it any time, buddy. Ill take it, Vogelsongsaid.
The Giants will take what theyre getting from Sandoval, too.Hes starting to look locked in.
When hes swinging well, hes fun to watch, Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.
As you might expect, Vogelsong was asked how his ritual meal ofchicken enchiladas tasted Saturday night.
The enchiladas were good, he said. The place I get themfrom, theyre always good.
Prepare for every Mexican restaurant in the Bay Area toadvertise a Rally Enchilada special. Fans certainly got into the saucygoodness with their Twitter avatars. Vogelsongs wife, Nicole, was overwhelmedwith fans sending her recipes and images.
Shell probably give me the lowdown tonight and show mesome pictures, Vogelsong said. Shes been around me long enough to knowthat this afternoon probably wasnt the best time to show me whats onTwitter.
Well, considering his teammates don't talk to him AT ALL on the days he pitches ... yes, probably not.
The grounds crew put the tarp on the field just minutesafter the final out of Game 6. The weather is going to be dicey for Monday,with an 80 percent chance of showers.
All parties will go all night to get the game in, though.
Game 1 of the World Series is scheduled for Wednesday, andthanks to Melky Cabrera and the NL All-Star team, the National League hashome-field advantage. So the Detroit Tigers, who are scrimmaging againstinstructional league pups at the moment, are waiting to find out where theyllfly on Tuesday to start the series.
Thats why MLB cant push back this NLCS Game 7 a day.
Last word, from Vogelsong, about one of the loudest crowdsIve ever heard in nine years covering this team:
Theyre making this something that Im never, ever going toforget. And I cant thank them enough for it.