GAME 4 – Tempe at West Coast – Tempe Tempers up 2 games to 1

(10.3.12) Afternoon sun blazing, stadium decked out for playoffs, fans happy to see their team in the Division Series, but they are still shell shocked. Tempe, after dropping game 1 at home, they have dropped the hammer on the Swing. They let their Tempers flare and have outscored West Coast 24-1 in the last two games.  West Coast is NOT starting Scott Baker in game 4, but they are going back to Gavin Floyd, their game one starter – maybe that’s where their magic is.  Tempe is countering with Game 2 starter (and winner) Brandon McCarthy.

The first inning has been the game breakers for Tempe in games 2 and 3 and in this one it seems they are taking off right where they left off in game 3.  Granderson leads off with a double. Cabrera then smashes one to short – and it bounds off Desmond’s glove, Cabrera safe – Grandy was unable to move to 3rd.  Pence then singles to LF and Granderson scores, no throw, runnrer at 1st and 2nd, no outs and 1-0 Tempe.  Nemesis Trip coming up and Schindel stays with Floyd.  AGon helps out the home team by grounding in DP, Cabrera to 3rd. Tulo thens rocks a liner up the middle and Floyd put up his glove in self defense and lo and behold the ball was in it for the final out.  1-0 Tempe.  West Coast went out in order in the 1st and Tempe did nothing in their half of the 2nd.

Bottom of the second,  Cuddyer (who, remember him) leads off with a single and steals 2nd. With 1 out, Utley singles to CF and Cuddyer is cut down at home trying to score. Utley then steals 2nd (with 2 outs).  Mgr Douglas calls for the IW to Trumbo to face Torrealba. Yorvit hits a pea past AGon at first, Utley scores, Trumbo scores and Torrealba hustles all the way to 3rd.  The 12 inning scoreless drought is over. And the Swing actually have a lead, 2-1.

Leads can be short lived and this one was.  Top 3 Tempe charge back (big time).  Floyd still on the mound, Punto leads off the inning PH for McCarthy and singles.  Gutierrez PRs for Punto. Uh-Oh, Schindel has seen enough of Floyd (why?) – and he calls for Josh Johnson.  Johnson got mauled in game 2, but that was an aberration, wasn’t it. He comes in with a 54.00 era! Gutierrez steals 2b. Granderson then walks. Cabrera hits slow roller, out at 1st but runners move to 2nd and 3rd. Pence says Johnson who – and doubles in two runs to put Tempe back in the lead 3-2.  AGon then walks and  the Nemesis Trio unloads again as Tulo hits a three run homer and Tempe suddenly lead 6-2. Johnson is getting hammered again.  But he will stick around – working on lowering the era. He gets them out finally.  In the bottom half something different happens, West Coast doesn’t role over and play dead. With one out Pierre singles and then Victorino plows one over the wall for a 2 run homer and the Tempe lead is cut to 6-4.  After that Manager Douglas lifts Peralta in favor of Jim Johnson, so we have Johnson & Johnson pitching for both teams.

There is not scoring for a while but part of that was due to some great arms in the outfield. Pence was cut down by Cuddyer at home in the 5th (trying to score from 2nd on AGon single to RF).

Bottom of the 6th, Tempe brings in Holland to hold off West Coast. But Cuddyer leads off with a homer!  His bat, dormant for 2 games, has reemerged for game 4.  Zimmerman then decides he can do it too and he goes over the wall and now the game is tied at 6-6.  The game goes to the 9th with the score still knotted at 6.

Top 9 – Perkins has been in for West Coast for 1.1 ip and he gives up a leadoff double to Ruiz.  Schindel lifts him in and calls on Josh Lindblom. Repko called to PR for Ruiz. Butera grounds out, but Repko moves to 3rd. Granderson up, IF in, and Granderson fans.  2 outs.  Cabrera up and he grounds to short to end the inning – but NO, he beats out the throw, it was a weak one, Desmond barehanded it, and Cabrera is safe and Tempe takes the 7-6 lead in the top of the 9th. Cabrera then tries to steal 2nd but Teagarden throws him out.  Tempe needs three outs to secure the win, West Coast needs 1 to tie or go down 3 games to 1.

Bottom 9 – Madson on the mound, Trumbo leads off with a single.  Blackmon comes in as PR. Eric Young, JR. comes in to PH for Teagarden, he grounds to short with Blackmon moving and Tulo goes to 1st for the 1st out. Nunez then comes in to PH for Lindblom.  He drills one straight to Cabrera in CF – he’s there but whoa! It’s over his head.  It goes to the wall, Blackmon scores and Nunez’s rounds 2nd heading for 3rd and there is no play. He’s standing on 3rd clapping those hands looking up at the scoreboard and seeing a tie game!  Madson still pitching, Nunez on 3rd, 1 out, IF in, Desmond up and he drills it to RF, it is high, it is far and it is caught by Pence…Nunez tags, Pence unloads and … he’s safe at the plate.  West Coast wins 8-7 on a 2 run ninth to come back.  4 lead changes dramatic rallies in the 9th. Series tied 2-2!

TEM  7 10 0
WCS  8 10 1
WP Lindblom (1-0)
LP Madson (0-2)
HRs: TEM – Tulowitzski (1); WCS – Victorino (1), Cuddyer (2), Zimmerman (1)

So far Baker (for WCS) and Madson (for TEM) are both 0-2.  Pence is hitting .500, Beltre .462 (with 4 homers), AGon .429, Tulo .385, Cabrera .368.  Cuddyer leads West Coast with .333 and 2 homers.

Game 5 coming up with the series tied and the knowledge that Tempe will once again host a game or two more.  Who will start Game 5?

WEDNESDAY 07/31/2024
AT 11:59 PM - ET!