They say things come in threes right?

Well, things certainly came in threes on Thursday. We saw three divisional round games with three bad umpire calls that lead to three victories.

We had the Michael Young check swing incident in the Texas Rangers–Tampa Bay Rays game. We then had the missed third strike call in Lance Berkman‘s at-bat in the New York Yankees and Minnesota Twins game. Then for the hat trick, we had another blown call that led to the game’s only run in the San Francisco Giants and Atlanta Braves game.

In the bottom of the fourth, with Buster Posey on first and Pat Burrell at the plate, Posey attempted to steal second. Burrell swung and missed and Braves’ catcher Brian McCann came up firing.

It appeared that Posey was out by at least a half a step, but second base umpire Paul Emmel called him safe. Naturally in the same inning, Cody Ross singled to left on a ball that Omar Infante should have had and Posey scored.

It turned out it was the only run of the game and the Giants defeated the Braves 1-0 to take a 1-0 lead in their best-of-five NLDS. While the blown call was pivotal in this game, the story of this game was Giants ace Tim Lincecum.

After allowing a lead-off double to Infante, Lincecum settled down and pitched one of the all time great playoff games. He allowed only one more hit the rest of the game as he went distance and struck out 14.

While his fastball was very good last night, I thought it was his slider that was off the charts. He threw 20 of them and threw 16 of them for strikes. The slider to strike out McCann in the top of the first was unhittable.

I give credit to Bruce Bochy for leaving Lincecum in the game in the ninth. Many managers in that situation would have immediately gone to their closer and played it safe. The feel of the game called for Lincecum going out to take the mound in the ninth.

Of course, I am almost certain that if Lincecum allowed a runner on base, Bochy would have turned to Brian Wilson, who was warming up in the pen to end close things out.

As for the Braves, Lincecum’s dominance really exposed them offensively. Where is the offense going to come from in this series?

Bobby Cox had Alex Gonzalez batting fifth? Let me repeat that. Alex Gonzalez was batting fifth in a playoff game! He might be a nice guy, but the reality is that he hit .240 with a .291 OBP with the Braves.

If McCann or Jason Heyward don’t do damage, who is in this lineup? I have a hard time answering that question right now.

The Braves will try to get even tonight with Tommy Hanson. Game 2 is scheduled to start at 9:37 PM est.

You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

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