Results tagged ‘ San Diego Padres ’
The Giants did something Wednesday that they haven’t been able to do since May 27 in Miami.
They hit a home run.
And it came off the potent bat of Gregor Blanco.
Blanco’s blast not only helped the Giants win for the seventh time in nine games — nine games with just one home run — it moved the Giants out of a 29th-place tie for home runs by a team in the majors.
It was the Giants’ 32nd home run of the season, one ahead of the Padres.
In fact, if the Giants were to hit eight home runs in Thursday’s game, they would still rank 29th in the majors in home runs.
One of the Bay Area scribe’s recently wrote that the Giants cannot expect to keep up their winning ways with such little power productions. But the Giants are finding other ways to score runs and win games.
Besides hitting just one home run in the past nine games, the Giants also have only one of another stat: Errors.
That’s right. Even though the Giants rank first in the National League with 51 errors (only second in the majors behind the Orioles’ 52), they have only committed one error in the past nine games. They are on a six-game errorless streak.
They have not committed an error by an infielder since May 26, and have not had a multi-error game since May 23, the last time shortstop Brandon Crawford committed an error.
It addition to good glove work, the Giants have been good with the bats in other ways.
Their 506 hits ranks fifth in the majors and third in the NL behind the Cardinals and Phillies.
Their 22 triples leads the majors.
And even though they don’t hit fly balls over the fence, they hit them deep enough score runs. Their 23 sacrifice flies is tied for the major league lead with the Red Sox.
On Wednesday, the Giants knocked out 11 hits. Every positions player had at least one, with Blanco, Melky Cabrera and Brett Pill (he really need that) having two-hit games.
Buster Posey lifted his team-high five sacrifice fly.
So the Giants are showing that good pitching, hitting and defense is good enough to win … at least against the Padres, Cubs and Diamondbacks. Doing that against the Rangers may be a different story.
Matt Cain takes the hill against Jason Marquis in a 12:35 p.m. game on Thursday.
At first glance at Tuesday’s start, it seems like the same old story for Tim Lincecum.
One bad inning.
Lincecum gave up four runs on five hits — and just one walk — in six innings of work. All four runs (not to mention four of the hits and the lone walk) occurred in the second inning.
In the other five innings, Lincecum set down 15 of the 16 batters he faced. Carlos Quentin’s sixth-inning double was the lone baserunner in those innings. All eight of Lincecum’s strikeouts came after the Padres’ four-run second.
But even the second inning wasn’t as terrible as it looked.
It started off bad, with a Quentin home run followed by a Chase Headley double.
After John Baker flied out, Logan Fosythe walked, then Everth Cabrera singled home the second run.
But this is where Lincecum almost escaped without further damage.
Anthony Bass, attempting to sacrifice, bunted hard to Brandon Belt, who threw out Forsythe at third. But in making the glove exchange, third baseman Joaquin Arias dropped the ball, preventing an inning-ending double play.
However, on second glance, the Giants were lucky to get one out on the play.
Replays showed that Arias not only came off the bag before catching the ball, it’s not even clear he caught the ball cleanly at all. So could have easily had been bases loaded with one out.
That’s important because Cameron Maybin then hit a Lincecum changeup off his shoe tops for a broken-bat, two-run double.
Lincecum said: “Nine times out of 10 if I throw that same pitch to him, maybe it’s a double play.”
Well, as long as Starlin Castro isn’t your shortstop.
But after the second, Lincecum shut down the Padres and gave his team a chance to rally, which they did by tying the game with a three-run sixth.
The Giants even took the lead in the seventh, giving Lincecum the chance to get the win.
But home runs in the eighth by Quentin and in the ninth of Forsythe (his first career home run) turned a possible win into a Giants loss — the seventh consecutive loss in a Lincecum start.
Since May 4, the Giants are 0-7 in Lincecum starts; 19-5 in starts by the other four starters.
Madison Bumgarner starts against Clayton Richard in a funky San Diego 3:35 p.m. start.
Tim Lincecum is still not the Tim Lincecum we are used to seeing dominate teams. But he made another positive step in that direction.
After getting his first win of the season Monday in New York, Lincecum got another win in a solid eight-inning, 122-pitch outing against the Padres.
So let’s break it down, the good and the bad.
GOOD: He got his first quality start of the season, giving up no earned runs in eight innings. His ERA is at 5.74 now.
BAD: His velocity is still not what we’re used to seeing. He hit 90 and 91 at spots, but was consistently at 89 mph most of the game.
GOOD: He stayed at 89 mph all the way through the game, even as his pitch count got up into the 120s.
BAD: He struggled to knock batters out with a strikeout pitch. He only had five, his second lowest-total this season despite facing a season-high 31 batters. And three of those strikeouts were to the opposing pitcher, Anthony Bass.
GOOD: Even though the Padres were hitting the ball, they were making outs. The Padres only managed three hits and none of them left the infield: a swinging bunt by Jesus Guzman in the first inning, a grounder by Yonder Alonso to second baseman Emmanuel Burriss in the second inning which was originally rules an error (correctly), then changed to a hit (incorrectly), and a bunt single by Will Venable in the eighth.
BAD: Lincecum walked four.
GOOD: Yes, but only one of them came after the third inning.
BAD: If not for two stellar running catches to the warning track by Melky Cabrera in left, it would have been much worse for Lincecum.
GOOD: After those hard shots in the fourth, Lincecum set down 8 of the next 9 without much fuss. In fact those outs by Cabrera were part of a stretch when Lincecum retired 12 of 13.
BAD: It was the Padres.
GOOD: It’s part of a longer stretch. Lincecum has now allowed one earned run in the past 13 innings (0.62 ERA) and two earned runs in his past 17 innings (1.06 ERA).
- Pablo Sandoval went 0 for 4 to end his season-opening hitting streak at 20. A blessing in disguise maybe. The Panda appeared to be pressing in recent days and did not look good Saturday, making out on first pitches three times.
- Angel Pagan’s bunt single in the eighth extended his hitting streak to 13 games.
- Brandon Belt had the big hit with his two-run double in the seventh inning. He’s hitting .278 now.
- Lincecum broke up Bass’ perfect game bid with an infield single in the sixth.
- Santiago Casilla recorded his third save in three tries, striking out one and only allowing a baserunner on his own error.
- Before the game, the Giants sent pitcher Eric Hacker back to Fresno after his quality start Friday and called up reliever Steve Edlefsen to give them seven pitchers in the bullpen again.
Madison Bumgarner faces lefty Clayton Richard. No word whether Saturday’s hero Belt will be in there vs. a lefty or if we’ll see Brett Pill, or even Buster Posey at 1B (day game after night game) and Hector Sanchez catching. We’ll look for Belt in there (either at first or left field) and scuffling Nate Schierholtz to get a day off.