"Don't be sad that it's over, smile because it happened." - Vin Scully quoting Dr. Seuss.
San Francisco scored five runs in the first two innings and Los Angeles still can't solve the riddle that is left-handed pitching as the Giants clinched a playoff spot, sweeping the Dodgers 7-1, on Sunday afternoon, the final game of Vin Scully's historic career.
The Dodgers are swept in their final series of the season and limp into the playoffs, losers of five of their last six games.
"We're going to have to hit the reset button," Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said after the game. "It was a crazy week, some highs and some lows. We played a team who had their backs against the wall and they played like it."
Synonymously, the sky started as gray as ash, but by the time Scully was given a tribute in the fourth inning, it opened up overhead with an intense burst of blue, like a jewel in the sun.
The Giants scored two runs in the first inning on three straight hits to start the game. Denard Span kicked things off with a line drive hit to right field, Brandon Belt followed with a double, and Buster Posey drove them both home with a two-run single to right.
San Francisco scored three more runs in the second inning as they fell a home run short of the cycle in the frame. Joe Panik singled, Conor Gillapsie doubled, and Span tripled to score them both.
Kenta Maeda (16-11) was charged with all five runs and had a miserable end to the regular season. He ends his rookie campaign with back-to-back losses, and a horrific final line.
The rookie right-hander allowed five runs on nine hits with two walks and three strikeouts as he was unable to get out of the third inning.
The game marked the final tune-up for the Japanese right-hander before the NLDS begins on Friday, and needless to say, he will have a lot to work on before Game 3 at Dodger Stadium next Monday.
"He didn't throw the ball well," Roberts said of Maeda. "We did a lot of things we don't normally do in this series, but that's no excuse. We'll be ready to go on Friday."
Matt Moore (13-12) was masterful in his final start of the regular season, the left-hander looked more like the guy that was one-out away from a no-hitter at Dodger Stadium on Aug. 25 than he did the guy who allowed six runs in a loss on Sept. 21.
Moore did not allow a hit until the fourth inning, finishing with just one run allowed on just three hits with two walks and six strikeouts in eight dominant innings.
The fourth inning is when the Dodgers finally got on the board as Yasmani Grandal hit an RBI single to left field scoring Justin Turner, for the first and only LA run of the game.
The Giants secured a playoff spot with the win and will travel to Citi Field in New York City to face the Mets on Wednesday.
The final words of the immortal Vin Scully will be remembered forever:
"I have said enough for a lifetime, and for the last time, I wish you all a very pleasant good afternoon."
After the game ended, the telecast aired one final message from Scully to the fans.
"May God give you…
For every storm, a rainbow.
For every tear, a smile.
For every care, a promise,
And a blessing in each trial.
For every problem life sends,
A faithful friend to share,
For every sigh, a sweet song,
And an answer for each prayer.
You and I have been friends for a long time, but I know in my heart I have always needed you more than you have ever needed me, and I'll miss our time together more than I can say.
There will be a new day and eventually a new year. And when the upcoming winter gives way to spring, rest assured, it will be "time for dodger baseball." So this is Vin Scully wishing you a very pleasant good afternoon, wherever you may be."
Players of the Game:
Denard Span: 3-for-5 with a triple, two RBI and three runs scored.
Buster Posey: 3-for-5 with three RBI.
Justin Turner: Broke up no-hitter, run scored.
1. Let's Get Back to This One: Sunday marked not just the final game of the regular season, but the final broadcast of the best announcer in baseball, Vin Scully. Scully called more than 9,000 games, 21 no-hitters, three perfect games and multiple World Series. It's fitting his final call was between the Dodgers and Giants arguably the greatest rivalry in all of sports. With the sweep, SF took the season series over the Dodgers for the second straight year.
— Vin Scully (@VinScullyTweet) October 2, 2016
2. Pull Up a Chair: The last call of Vin Scully was full of stories as you might have expected. The most fascinating of them all, was the tale of an eight-year-old redhead in the Bronx who happened upon a box score from Game 2 of the World Series on October 2nd, 1936. The Giants lost that game, 18-4, at the hands of the New York Yankees, and Scully marks that moment as the day he fell in love with baseball. It's why, 80 years later, he thought it serendipitous to end his career on the same day, 80 years to the day he first fell in love with the sport.
Vin Scully's "fairy tale" last call could be a clincher for his boyhood team, 80 years to the day he became a fan. https://t.co/7uHlyhAKxc
— Bill Shaikin (@BillShaikin) October 2, 2016
3. She is…Gone! The San Francisco Giants honored legendary Dodgers broadcaster Vin Scully with a plaque in the press box at AT&T Park. The hardware commemorates Scully's last game as well as his Hall of Fame career. Scully's last call was on Sunday as he retired after 67 seasons after the final game of the season.
— SFGiants (@SFGiants) October 2, 2016
Dodgers (91-71): Los Angeles concludes the regular season, losing five of their last six. They open up the first round of the NLDS on Friday, October 7 in Washington D.C. against the Nationals.
Giants (87-75): San Francisco concludes their season with a sweep of the Dodgers, clinching the second Wild Card seed in the National League. They will square off with the Mets in New York on Wednesday, October 5.