Rick Ankiel saves the Braves season.
Giants starter Matt Cain made the Braves think they were facing Tim Lincecum all over again for the first five innings, but Atlanta finally scored a run in the sixth then tied the game in the eighth off the Giants closer, Brian Wilson. Extra innings was then very VERY kind to Atlanta, capped off by a Rick Ankiel go-ahead solo home run.
Ankiel hit a no-doubter off of Ramon Ramirez deep into McCovey Cove beyond the right field wall. He had that chance thanks to a huge double play off the bat of Buster Posey, turned by "third baseman" Troy Glaus the inning before. The bad news is that the Braves may have lost closer Billy Wagner. He seemed to pull a muscle in his left side while pitching in the tenth inning, and had to leave the game, giving way to Kyle Farnsworth -- who came up huge to get out of a bases loaded jam and finish out the win.
It is unbelievable that we actually scored off this Giants team, let alone this Giants' bullpen -- one of the best in the game. Giants manager Bruce Bochy went to his closer Brian Wilson in the eighth with two runners on, and he could't hold the game and allowed the Braves to score three runs and tie the game. Amazing. The Braves needed that, and so did Alex Gonzalez who had the key hit in the inning, a game-tying two-run double.
There were just so many big plays in this game, and I'm way to amped/excited to adequately recap this game. So many key moments, and the Braves were finally able to take advantage of them. GO HERE for the inning by inning live recap of the game.
Wow, what a game, the Braves now command home-field advantage coming back to Turner Field for two games where they are a much better team. Crazy win for Atlanta. Improbable. But that describes this depleted Braves team -- improbable.