“Disengaged” That’s the way one of the DBacks announcers described a Brandon Crawford at bat that ended with him flailing at a curve ball for strike three. In last night’s 4-3 excruciating loss to Arizona the Giants played just well enough to lose. The loss dropped the Giants to 43-42 and killed the momentum they had after two straight wins in San Diego. They are now 21-21 at home, which is frankly, terrible.
In fact this was the first home loss to Arizona in 22 months. Wow.
Last night the boys fell behind 3-0 in the top of the third when the Diamondbacks had consecutive RBI hits with two outs. Alex Cobb was not able to get out of the inning and limit the damage and that is one of the marks against this Giant pitchers not named Webb or Rodon this season. It’s been a season-long struggle to pitch through errors and extended inning. In the top of the third Luis Gonzalez started looking at the runners before fielding a routine hit. The ball got by him and allowed the runners to advance a bag, which then allowed two to score on the Varsho single immediately after. That’s the difference in the game folks: a routine play turned into an error by a Giant.
The DBacks, for their part, failed to turn a double play that would have ended the inning in the bottom of the fourth on a routine grounder by the same Gonzalez. The result was a run and it gave the Giants some life in this game.
In the top of the 8th the Arizona club tacked on a run on an Alcantara single off Llovera. It hurt.
The Giants would rally in the bottom of the 8th inning scoring two runs to make it a game, thanks in part to a double by Wilmer Flores that hit the third base bag and bounced over the helpless and stunned Diamondback third baseman. It was quite funny actually and just what the Giants needed. The hit scored Wade and Ruf and the Giants were in business. But unfortunately that would be it. The inning looked to be so promising with Gonzalez and Villar walking after Flores’s double and Brandon Crawford up with one out. But the Giant shortstop hit into a double play and that was it. He looked safe to me but no dice. The Giants were done and BCraw had a very bad night at the plate, leaving half a dozen runners on base.
Not forever Giant Mark Melancon shut the Giants down in the bottom of the ninth to get the save. The Giants were also by Merrill Kelly who went seven innings and allowed only five hits. He seemed to have life on his fastball that was simply too much for the Giants on this night. For his part, Alex Cobb pitched well enough to win on most nights if the Giants hit a lick. He pitched six innings allowing six hits and three runs, all earned but one should have been unearned.
Normally I would embed highlights but there were not really any worth posting. Brandon Belt went 3-3 as the DH and Flores continued his hot hitting going 2-4. Belt’s double was hit at 106 MPH and looked to be a homer but it was a cold and foggy night at the yard and the Captain had to settle for a double. He shook his head as he stood on the bag, knowing he just got Willie Mays Fielded.
The team has a whole had only eight hits on the night. They need more from their bats. Once again Joc Pederson, the Giant MVP of 2022, was lifted for Darrin Ruf only to be riding pine when he could have been effective later in the game. This platooning has reached new levels of absurdity and something needs to be done. Somebody needs to say “Enough!” to Gabe Kapler. Let Wade and Pederson play a full game. Let Estrada face righties and play more second base.
Ok, I feel better now.
The Evan Longoria Home Run Derby for the Cure
Before Saturday’s game in San Diego Evan Longoria, on the IL, decided to liven things up and start a home run derby, ultimately won by Austin Slater. It was rare for the Giants to take batting practice on the field before the game in San Diego but Longoria’s idea was to lighten things up a bit and get the players engaged in a different way. It was cute and it worked. The Giants won on Saturday night.
Tonight it will be Dallas Keuchel against Logan Webb with first pitch at 6:45 PM at Willie Mays Field.