After a 107-win season, their most wins in a regular season in franchise history, Antoan Richardson and the San Francisco Giants now find themselves in an elimination game.
They finished with a 107-55 win/loss record, one game ahead of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League West Division of Major League Baseball (MLB). The Dodgers tied a franchise record with 106 wins, but still finished behind San Francisco. It marked the first time a division featured two teams with at least 105 wins. The Giants won the regular season series, 10-9.
Now, after losing to those same Dodgers, 7-2, on Tuesday, they find themselves in danger of being eliminated as there will be a winner-take-all-game this evening. The divisional series is tied at two games apiece, and the decisive game five is set for this evening at 9:07 at Oracle Park in San Francisco, California. It will be televised on TBS.
Richardson, the seventh Bahamian to play in the major leagues, serves as the first base coach of the Giants. He said in an earlier interview with The Nassau Guardian that they have more work to do, adding that winning the division title this year was just one of their goals. They want to represent the National League in the World Series and win that as well. A win against the Dodgers this evening would place them in the National League Championship Series (NLCS) for the first time since 2014 – the last time they won the World Series title.
Richardson said from San Francisco yesterday that their style and approach has pretty much remained the same all year, and he doesn’t expect that to change now.
“We just have to run off our approach and our game plan. We’ve done that all year and we experienced a lot of success,” he said. “We just do what we do and go play the game. When we go out there and execute our plan, the results have taken care of themselves. We’re going to go out there, have some fun and just execute our plan as best as we can. Once we do that, we feel like we’ll have a chance to come out on top and have a chance to play some more baseball. This is an exciting time, and we’re all looking forward to the competition.”
Without getting into too much detail, Richardson said he expects the game to be tightly contested and is confident of their chances to come out on top.
“We go in there locked in with a mindset of executing. That doesn’t change,” he said. “Our approach has been the same all year in terms of our focus. We trust that our recipe will bring us success. We’re looking forward to it and hopefully we could get to the next round. I hope The Bahamas is watching and hopefully we’ve converted some Bahamians to Giants’ fans.”
The Giants will send right-handed pitcher Logan Webb to the mound and the Dodgers will counter with the majors’ lone 20-game winner this season Julio Urias, a lefty. Both prevailed in their starting appearances in the series – Webb in Game One and Urias in Game Two.
The Giants shut out the Dodgers in their two wins in the series, while the Dodgers may not have any shutouts to their credit, but they won their two games convincingly. The two teams have combined for four World Series titles in the past 12 seasons – the Giants in 2010, 2012 and 2014, and the Dodgers in the COVID-19 shortened season of 2020.
The Giants is one of the more successful franchises of the 21st century in the majors, and certainly the team of the 2010s, with three World Series titles this millennium – all in a four-year span from 2010 to 2014. They won once every two years during that span.
The Dodgers are the defending World Series Champions and have represented the National League in the World Series in three of the last four years. They have advanced to the NLCS in seven of the last 13 seasons.
The winner of tonight’s game will move on to the NLCS to play the Atlanta Braves. The 2021 World Series gets underway on October 26.