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World Series Live blog: Giants-Rangers Game 5

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UPDATE: It’s all over! Brian Wilson strikes out Nelson Cruz swinging and the Giants have won it! The Giants have won their first World Series title since 1954!

Stay tuned for the postgame from Craig and all sorts of fallout. Thanks for reading HBT all season long.

10:28 PM: Make that two away. Vlad swings at the first pitch (of course) and grounds out to shortstop. It’s down to Nelson Cruz.

10:27 PM: One away, as Josh Hamilton goes down with the bat on his shoulder. 2-for-20 in the series.

10:24 PM: It’s going to be Brian Wilson in the bottom of the ninth.

10:23 PM: Feliz shuts down the Giants in the top of the ninth, including a strike out of Pat Burrell. The Rangers have three outs left. Will Bruce Bochy let Lincecum finish what he started? Let’s see…

10:16 PM: It’s almost like the Rangers just want to go home. Lincecum needed only nine pitches to get out of the bottom of the eighth inning. He has 10 strikeouts on the night. Look for Brian Wilson to come on in the bottom of the ninth.

10:09 PM: Feliz gave up a two-out infield single to Buster Posey, but was able to escape the eighth without any further damage. It’s 3-1 going into the bottom of the eighth.

10:07 PM: McCarver pushing the angle that the Rangers should have intentionally walked Renteria to get to Aaron Rowand. We’ll hear a lot about that one if the Rangers lose this game, though I’m not sure that’s fair, really.

10:03 PM: Here’s something interesting. Neftali Feliz is in to start the top of the eighth inning. Cliff Lee is done for the night after throwing 95 pitches.

10:01 PM: Ian Kinsler followed the Cruz homer with a walk, but Lincecum was able to strike out David Murphy and Bengie Molina to end the inning, leaving him stranded at first base. We’re headed to the eighth.

9:53 PM: Don’t give up just yet, Rangers fans. Nelson Cruz just hit a solo homer with out out in the bottom of the seventh. It’s 3-1 Giants.

And by the way, Neftali Feliz is up in the Rangers’ bullpen. Maybe Ron Washington finally realized that these games, you know, matter?

9:45 PM: My goodness. Edgar Renteria just hit a three-run homer that eeked over the left field wall. That ball just kept carrying and carrying and carrying…

Incredible.

9:43 PM: Burrell, of course, struck out. It’s up to Edgar Renteria with two away. I’m not a fan of either team and I’m on the edge of my seat here. Just really compelling stuff.

9:38 PM: Aubrey Huff just sacrificed Ross and Uribe over to second and third respectively. It took a great play from Cliff Lee to even get the out at first base. That was Huff’s first career sacrifice bunt. Excellent timing, I’d say. The bad news for Giants fans? Here comes Pat Burrell.

9:37 PM: Well, we finally have a runner in scoring position. Cody Ross and Juan Uribe have started the top of the seventh with back-to-back singles.

9:32 PM: Just a comparison. Through six innings, Lincecum has thrown 68 pitches and Lee has thrown 75. Insane.

9:28 PM: Tim McCarver was expecting the bunt with Elvis Andrus there, but Ron Washington went with the hit-and-run instead. I’m inclined to agree with the latter, although one run really might be enough here. We still haven’t seen anyone reach second base in this one.

9:24 PM: Oh wow. Nelson Cruz failed to make a diving catch on a ball hit by Freddy Sanchez with two outs, but he just robbed Buster Posey of extra bases with a leaping catch on the warning track in right. Redemption. This one is still scoreless going into the bottom of the sixth.

9:15 PM: Another 1-2-3 inning for Lincecum. This is truly a joy to watch. I’d love to see the comparison of commercials to actual inning-time. Seriously, I think the commercials are winning.

9:13 PM: Mitch Moreland’s drop was rendered irrelevant thanks to another scoreless inning by Cliff Lee. We already headed to the bottom of the fifth in Arlington!

9:07 PM: You guys probably aren’t going to believe this, but Pat Burrell just struck out. Film at 11.

9:02 PM: Young’s leadoff single goes for naught, as Lincecum struck out Josh Hamilton, got Vladimir Guerrero on a fielder’s choice and then fanned Nelson Cruz to end the inning. By the way, the Rangers are scoreless over their last 16 innings.

8:55 PM: And the Rangers have their first hit of the night. Michael Young just singled up the middle to lead off the bottom of the fourth.

8:53 PM: Lee sits them down 1-2-3. He’s at 51 pitches through four innings, though, really, his pitch count will probably be pretty darn close to irrelevant tonight.

8:48 PM: Cliff Lee just needed 11 pitches to put Buster Posey away there. The Rangers could learn a lesson from this rookie.

8:40 PM: Anyway, back to the game at hand. Lincecum issued a two-out walk to Mitch Moreland, but managed to strike out the side in the bottom of the third. Maybe this is the classic pitchers’ duel everyone expected to see back in Game 1? I sure hope so.

8:38 PM: And there’s the black bowtie on Lincecum!

8:32 PM: Cliff Lee just made a pretty nifty snag of a liner off the bat of Freddy Sanchez to end the top of the third inning. He’s a pretty cool customer.

8:25 PM: Lincecum just made easy work of the Rangers in the bottom of the second. Or, rather, the Rangers made it easy for Lincecum. He needed just six pitches there.

8:23 PM: Ken Rosenthal sporting the blue bowtie this evening. Nice. There were rumors that Lincecum wore a bowtie to the ballpark today. Anybody have photographic proof of this?

8:19 PM: After that flyout, Pat Burrell is 0-for-10 during the World Series. But hey, at least he made pretty solid contact this time. Tiny victories. We’re scoreless going into the bottom of the second.

8:12 PM: Tim Lincecum threw 13 pitches in a 1-2-3 bottom of the first inning. You know, this whole Freaky Freaks thing has me thinking about the David Bowie episode of “Flight of the Conchords.” Resist. Temptation. To. YouTube.

8:04 PM: Buster Posey mustered a two-out single, but newly-installed cleanup man Cody Ross popped out to Elvis Andrus to end of the top of the first. Cliff Lee needed just 10 pitches to get out of the inning. Yeah, this guy might still be pretty good.

7:59 PM: And we’re off and running. Cliff Lee strikes out Andres Torres swinging.

7:45 PM: Ah, baseball in November. Just the way the baseball gods intended.

Thanks to eight innings of shutout ball from 21-year-old left-hander Madison Bumgarner last night, the Giants are just one win away from their first World Series title since 1954 and their first since moving to San Francisco in 1958. Cliff Lee’s mission tonight is clear: get the series back to San Francisco for Game 6.

I’ll be dropping some of my random thoughts and observations here throughout the ballgame. Feel free to join the conversation in our comments section.

Looking for lineups? Aaron has you covered right here.

The Blue Jays and the Toronto press are fueding with each other

ST. PETERSBURG, FL - SEPTEMBER 3:  Manager John Gibbons #5 of the Toronto Blue Jays looks on from the dugout during the first inning of a game against the Tampa Bay Rays on September 3, 2016 at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Florida. (Photo by Brian Blanco/Getty Images)
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The Blue Jays are poised to make the playoffs for the second year in a row and are playing a critical series with the Orioles, the outcome of which will likely determine who gets to play at home for that one-and-done game next week. Big stakes! Must keep focused!

Or, alternatively, maybe it’s time to have a silly, juvenile feud with the press. Here’s Steve Buffery of the Toronto Sun, asking why the Jays are doing stuff like this while fighting for the playoffs:

Why, for example, would the leaders on the team allow someone to put up on a wall photos of two Toronto sports writers with an ‘X’ scratched on their face and the a message written on top reading, ‘Do not grant them interviews’ (or words to that effect)? . . . Things like: Someone cranking up the music just when the media arrives to conduct pre-game interviews.

Not that the Jays have been treated wonderfully by the press themselves:

There was an incident the other night when a couple of journalists tried to corral struggling closer Roberto Osuna for an interview, but he kept blowing them off. Finally, one reporter followed him right into a private part of the clubhouse and told him off.

That’s . . . not what you’re supposed to do.

Still, there is zero point to get into silly feuds with the media. If they overstep their bounds, there are a TON of Jays officials and, I suspect, newspaper editors, who will quickly and eagerly discipline the reporter. You don’t have to make wanted posters and act like children. Partially because it’s just a bad look. But also, because it leads to news stories about it like the one in the Toronto Sun.

And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights

ST. LOUIS, MO - SEPTEMBER 29: Rain falls during a game between the St. Louis Cardinals and the Cincinnati Reds at Busch Stadium on September 29, 2016 in St. Louis, Missouri.  (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)
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Here are the scores. Here are the highlights.

Oh, and here is my take on the idiotic ending to the Reds-Cardinals game which could potentially cost the Giants a playoff berth.

Nationals 5, Diamondbacks 3: Wilmer Difo hit his first major league homer. Pedro Severino hit his second. No National succumbed to season-ending injuries. So a rare success for Washington in these final days of the regular season.

Yankees 5, Red Sox 1: CC Sabathia allowed one run and four hits while pitching into the eighth inning. It was only his ninth win of the year — his first win in a month — but he lowered his ERA to 3.91. He strike out fewer guys than he used to, walks more and allows more hits. But the fact that he made 30 starts this year and made at least a modest return to form suggests that, maybe, Sabathia still has something in the tank. Not as an ace, of course, but at least as a guy who can give you some respectable innings at the back of a rotation. In other news, the Yankees were eliminated in the middle of this game by virtue of the Orioles beating the Blue Jays. Inevitable, but the mere fact that they staved off elimination until game 159 is pretty impressive given all that has happened this year.

Cubs 1, Pirates 1: You don’t see many ties in baseball. Unless it’s spring training. Or, like, 1912 or something and it gets dark. Thank Mother Nature for the game being called at 1-1. Thank this game having no playoff implications whatsoever for it not being resumed at a later date. It was the first tie in a regular season game since 2005.

Orioles 4, Blue Jays 0: Ubaldo Jimenez and two relievers combined on a three-hit shutout. Jimenez allowed one of those hits in his six and two-thirds innings. The O’s and Jays are tied in the Wild Card standings with Detroit (1.5 back) and Seattle (2 back) the only ones left who can break up their postseason party.

Braves 5, Phillies 2Freddie Freeman‘s 30-game hitting streak ended but the Braves won for the 10th time in 11 games. The Tigers play Atlanta in the season’s final series. A month or two ago that looked like a nice way to end things. Right now, however, there’s a decent chance that the Braves help end the Tigers season. If that comes to pass, please say a prayer for those Braves fans you know who are engaged to grumpy Tigers fans come Sunday. Not, um, that I know any of those.

Twins 7, Royals 6:

screen-shot-2016-09-30-at-6-51-30-am

Same.

Cardinals 4, Reds 3: Not sure what else there is to say at this point that I didn’t say here. I dunno, Yadier Molina and Jedd Gyorko hit solo homers. Wheeeeeee.

Rays 5, White Sox 3: Congratulations to Chris Archer for avoiding his 20th loss of the season. Pitcher wins and losses mean little about the skill or prowess of a pitcher, but it’s better not to be the answer to a trivia question like that.

Dodgers 9, Padres 4Joc Pederson doubled twice and drove in three as the Dodgers avoided a sweep. The Dodgers are two games behind the Nationals with three to play in the race for home-field advantage in their division series matchup. Between that and possibly keeping the Giants out of the Wild Card game, they have a lot to play for this weekend in San Francisco.

Mariners 3, Athletics 2: Mike Zunino hit a go-ahead home run in the seventh inning to keep the Mariners alive for at least one more day.

Giants 7, Rockies 2: Johnny Cueto started out a bit shaky, giving up two in the top of the first, but he settled down and didn’t allow anything else in his remaining six innings. It was close until the sixth when the San Francisco pulled ahead, thanks in part to an uncharacteristic defensive blunder by Nolan Arenado. The Giants control their own destiny in the Wild Card, standing a game ahead of St. Louis with three to play.

Indians vs. Tigers: POSTPONED: The leaves of brown came tumbling down

Remember in September in the rain
The sun went out just like a dying amber
That September in the rain

To every word of love i heard you whisper
The raindrops seemed to play our sweet refrain
Though spring is here to me it’s still September
That September in the rain