'Your papers, please' must never be heard in America
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San Francisco Giants right-hander Ryan Vogelsong broke his pitching hand when he fouled off a pitch in the fifth inning Monday night.
It takes talent to win a World Series, of course, but luck and timing also are huge factors. As the Washington Nationals aspire to a championship in 2013, here's a look at how the past five World Series winners reached the top.
When Jim Harbaugh and Alex Smith drove in the Giants' victory parade last fall, players on San Francisco's championship baseball team hoped they might be able to return the favor if the 49ers could win it all a few months later.
Second baseman Marco Scutaro is staying in San Francisco, right where he wanted to be.
On a spring training afternoon in March, Davey Johnson proclaimed that if his team didn't make the playoffs, the Washington Nationals could fire him. And he meant it. But in a season filled with organizational bests — 98 wins, the National League East crown and the arrival of a fan base — there never was any worry they'd have to.
Davey Johnson was picked as the NL Manager of the Year on Tuesday after the Washington Nationals bolted to the best record in baseball.
Throughout the season, as the Washington Nationals marched to a major league-best 98 victories, they shunned talk of individual awards. The World Series title, they said, was all that mattered.
It ended exactly the way it should have, with the Triple Crown winner frozen at the plate.
Banished to the bullpen, a two-time Cy Young Award winner has become baseball's most distinguished middle reliever.
Frost coming off their breath, Pablo Sandoval and the San Francisco Giants finished their workout at Comerica Park, headed back to the clubhouse and pulled off their hooded sweatshirts and parkas.
Pete Rose sat in the World Series. So did Reggie Jackson, Barry Zito and Paul O'Neill. Tim Lincecum lost his spot in the San Francisco Giants' rotation this October, and Jose Valverde forfeited his role as the Detroit Tigers' closer.
Gregor Blanco is chasing down line drives in left field, laying down perfect bunts and making run-saving relay throws.
Justin Verlander already lost. Doug Fister pitched gamely, but his fine effort wasn't good enough either.
Best in baseball? The Detroit Tigers and San Francisco Giants spent much of the season just trying to catch mediocre teams like the Chicago White Sox and Los Angeles Dodgers just to win their divisions.
Barry Zito never expected to start a World Series opener. Years ago, he learned not to count on anything in his baseball career.
"We're having fun with this. It's our way of supporting him for supporting us," Bochy said at the time. "We're all 49er fans here. This is in honor of Alex. I'm glad he didn't have to pay the fine. That's good news."
"For us to play like we did against this great club, I couldn't be prouder of these guys," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.