Cincinnati Reds 2, San Francisco Giants 1: Giants offense needs more shutouts from pitchers
For a second consecutive day, the best thing we can say about the Giants offense is “Hey, we didn’t get shutout.”
After throwing four consecutive shutouts earlier this week, the Giants needed shutouts Friday and against Saturday to win. They didn’t get it in either.
Normally, when a pitcher shuts down the Giants offense, it’s hard to totally credit the pitcher with that. Normally, the Giants help him out.
But as much as I’d like to avoid doing this, I’d have to give Mat Latos credit.
It was the fourth game that he did not walk a batter this season, although his 115-pitch outing was the most pitches he has thrown in a game without a walk.
But Latos is usually around the plate. He hasn’t walked more than two in a game in his last eight outings.
He’d get ahead of the Giant hitters, then had them on their heals, as they rolled ground ball after ground ball to his infielders.
That is until Brandon Belt smacked a one-out triple in the ninth, leading to the Giants’ only run.
So once again we find ourselves searching for silver linings.
- The Giants wasted a quality start from Barry Zito. Zito allowed only one run in six innings after miraculously avoiding the landmines he planted. Zito walked six out of eight batters during one stretch, including three in a row resulting in the Reds’ first run.
- Belt had a nice at-bat to get that triple, one of the Giants’ only two hits. Belt, who has been scuffling of late, did not start, but got his triple in a pinch-hitting role.
- The Giants still lead the NL West by one game as the Dodgers lost again, suffering their fifth shutout in six games. That’s enough to put a smile on any Giants fans face. Even the Diamondbacks loss, staying four games back.
- Joey Votto left in the fifth inning with a sore knee. He figures to sit out Sunday’s game.
- Brad Penny made his 2012 Giants debut out of the bullpen throwing 2 1/3 hitless innings. He retired all seven hitters he faced.
Ryan Vogelsong returns to the mound to face Bronson Arroyo in the series finale at 1:05 p.m. Sunday. The Giants look for a split of the series and a 5-2 homestand before heading East to conclude the first-half of the season.