DETROIT -- The Giants are no longer a mere baseball team. They are a soul-sucking force that journeys to the Midwest and obliterates the hopes and aspirations of entire industrial metropolitan areas.
Or something close to that. Seriously.
First in these postseason playoffs, the Giants wounded dreams in Cincinnati. Then in St. Louis. And on Saturday night here at Comerica Park, their 2-0 victory over the Detroit Tigers gave the Giants a three-games-to-none lead in the World Series.
It was quite a scene to witness and feel. The 42,262 loyalists who filled Comerica Park were fueled to howl and scream. They were ready to applaud and feast on anything that looked like one step toward a victory that would have put the Tigers right back in the Series.
The Giants gave them nothing. Absolutely nothing. Ryan Vogelsong, the starting pitcher, threw almost six shutout innings. Tim Lincecum came out of the bullpen and was lights out. Sergio Romo, the closer, took care of the rest. The crowd came to life between innings when the scoreboard implored them to, plus a few times for a few at-bats that eventually went nowhere. But otherwise, it was ... well, whatever passes for crickets on a 44-degree night in a packed ballpark.
For the Giants, that non-sound was a gorgeous thing to not hear.
"Definitely," said Romo. "It's very uplifting for us in the clubhouse and the dugout. We're up 3-0. They have to beat us four straight games
Correct. You might wonder how often such a comeback has previously occurred in a World Series. The answer: Never.
So, yes, the Giants are in a 99% unbeatable situation. The only question left is whether they finish off the Tigers here on their home field or back in San Francisco. The way Saturday night went, you wouldn't make odds of seeing baseball at AT&T Park again until 2013.
Tigers' manager Jim Leyland, a pragmatic human, was not sugarcoating the situation.
"Our guys know," said Leyland. "They can count. There's no secret formula or message for us."
No runs, either.
"We've been shut out for 18 innings," said Leyland. "So that's pretty hard to win a game."
It's tempting to say the Giants can't ever lose again, either. Their performance in Game 3 reflected the run they've been on since Game 5 against the Cardinals in the National League Championship Series. Beginning with the first inning of that game, the Giants have never trailed on the scoreboard. And once more Saturday, they stared down and vanquished every possible obstacle that could thwart them.
Cold? The Giants scoffed at the cold Saturday night, when the thermometer dipped to 44 degrees.
The American League's best batter? The Giants never let Miguel Cabrera get to second base for the second straight game.
The Tiger named Prince? The Giants made him swing the bat like a lowly serf -- and struck him out twice. Prince Fielder is a large man but has seemingly shrunk in size ever since he was called out on that home plate slide in Game 1.
And what of potential late-inning rallies? Are you kidding? In the ninth inning, with Romo on the mound, the Tigers' Jhonny Peralta lofted a deep fly toward the left field foul pole that seemed to have a chance to go out of the park. Instead, the ball fell slightly short -- and Giants' outfielder Gregor Blanco sprinted over with vengeance to make a nice catch in foul territory just a few feet
Other than that, the only moment of true concern all night was when Cabrera came to the plate in the fifth inning with the bases loaded against Vogelsong. Here was the AL's Triple Crown winner in a perfect position to do some real damage. But facing Vogelsong's best stuff, Cabrera could only pop up to shortstop and end the inning.
"He made a great pitch at the right time," Leyland said. "I thought we had Ryan on the ropes a couple of times. We couldn't get the killer hit, the killer blow."
In case you've forgotten, the last runs scored by the Tigers were way back in the ninth inning of Game 1 when Peralta hit a home run over the center field fence -- but even had some help with that one. Angel Pagan, the Giants' center fielder, reached up and banged his glove on the ball as it reached the top of the fence, helping send it over the top.
That play seems like a month ago. The Giants have been so dominant, it's almost not fair. In the locker room here after Saturday's victory, they were trying not to be too giddy but also not act as if they are stunned.
"I'm not surprised," said shortstop Brandon Crawford, "because of how good our staff has been. We're playing a good team. I think they're 4-0 this postseason (at home)."
Make that 4-1, after a crushing Tiger loss on a chilly evening. Although Romo, for one, didn't feel cold at all.
"No," Romo said. "Adrenaline is a beautiful thing."
You know the old saying about it not being over until the fat lady sings? With the Giants, it's not over until the bearded reliever slings. One more sling job to go.