The San Francisco Giants defeated the Detroit Tigers, 8-3, in Game 1 of the 2012 World Series on Wednesday night. Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval went 4-for-4 at the plate and became just the fourth player to hit three home runs in a World Series game, joining Babe Ruth, Reggie Jackson and Albert Pujols in that exclusive club.
The Giants took a first-inning lead on Sandoval's first home run, a solo shot. Sandoval's second round-tripper capped a three-run third inning for San Francisco, extending the lead to 4-0. A Barry Zito single gave San Francisco a five-run lead in the fourth, and Sandoval's third home run made it 6-0 after five innings. Detroit scored its first run in a sixth-inning rally that drove Zito out of the game, but Tim Lincecum threw 2⅓ perfect innings of relief to preserve the Giants' lead through eight innings. Jhonny Peralta hit a two-run home run in the ninth to narrow the margin to 8-3.
Tigers ace Justin Verlander struggled off the team's long layoff, throwing just four innings and allowing five earned runs while taking the loss. Jose Valverde's postseason struggles continued, as the former closer gave up two runs and four hits while recording just one out. Zito got the win for San Francisco.
The teams play Game 2 Thursday night in San Francisco. First pitch is scheduled for 8:07 ET.