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Giants Take Down Nats Despite Defiant Bryce Harper

Max Holm |
October 7, 2014 | 10:11 p.m. PDT

Staff Reporter

If Game 1 of the Nationals-Giants series taught us anything, it was that this series would be tight and low scoring.

Game 2 saw an 18-inning affair, the second 18-inning game in postseason history, won by Giants first baseman Brandon Belt's home run. Even though the Nats would have obviously wanted to win Game 2, they surely were happy that game ended.

Down 2-0 in the series facing elimination and Madison Bumgarner, the Nationals had to find a way to live another day.

Since the playoffs exhibit how the smallest plays can win or lose you a game, Game 3 was no different. A terrible decision by Bumgarner to throw out a runner at third following a sac bunt flew past Pablo Sandoval at third and saw two runners score on the error, as the Giants lost 4-1.

Going into Game 4, the Nationals had to like their chances with Gio Gonzalez on the mound against Ryan Vogelsong, riding the momentum from their Game 3 win.

Neither pitcher was outstanding during the regular season, but both are seasoned veterans who have pitched in October before. Gio doesn't have great postseason numbers, while the 37-year old Vogelsong went 3-0 in the Giants World Series run in 2012.

SEE ALSO: Peavy, Giants Bullpen Shut Down Nationals In Game 1

But Vogelsong lived up to his postseason reputation in the Giants' Game 4 clinching win.

The Nationals trailed 2-0 early before Bryce Harper, a.k.a. the entire Nats offense, doubled in their first run. Then Harper went yard in the seventh to tie the game and become the second player younger than 21 ever to hit three home runs in a playoff series.

It's a shame to see Harper's magical postseason come to an end, but with such a young nucleus, the future is still bright in DC. Tey'll need a firm assessment of their team this winter, especially to add some bats to help number 34.

The Giants don't have much offense either, but like the team they're about to play, they find a way to win. The San Francisco pitching surpassed expectations. To have a chance against the staple St. Louis Cardinals they'll need a massive series from Hunter Pence, Buster Posey and the Kung Fu Panda. Bumgarner also can't be throwing away ground balls into foul territory.

Gotta love October; down to the last four!

Reach Staff Reporter Max Holm here.



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