The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

October 24, 2012

Sandoval, Cain, Cabrera earned home Series start



SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The World Series starts in San Francisco because the All-Star game was a Giant blowout. Pablo Sandoval, Matt Cain and Melky Cabrera made sure of it.

"I don't think you really think about it that much," Cain said, "but it is kind of cool when you do."

Cain pitched two shutout innings, Sandoval connected off Detroit's Justin Verlander for the first bases-loaded triple in All-Star history and Cabrera hit a two-run home run in the NL's 8-0 rout on that July night at Kansas City's Kauffman Stadium.

Since 2003, the All-Star-winning league has gained homefield advantage for the World Series. The Giants host the Tigers in the opener Wednesday night.

"When you go to the All-Star game, you have to take that thing serious," Sandoval said. "That's what we do. Cain, our guys, do our thing to try to bring this to the National League."

Verlander, the first pitcher in 19 years to sweep the Cy Young Award and MVP, admitted he didn't treat that start like a normal outing. That's part of the reason he'll be starting the Series opener at AT&T Park instead of at his own Comerica Park.

"Do I wish it would have worked out a little bit better and we'd be at home right now?" he said Tuesday. "Absolutely, but it didn't, and we're here."

Verlander allowed five runs and four hits in a 35-pitch first inning. He threw five pitches clocked at 100 mph and another at 101.

"But I had fun," he said then. "That's why I don't try to throw 100 in the first inning. But this is for the fans. It doesn't usually work out too well for me."

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