Last night’s game at Petco Park‒aka AT&T South‒started kinda slow. I thought we might even be in for a boring game. The good news is I was wrong.
The Padres have made some changes at Petco. All that is about as interesting as watching paint dry. Maybe going to San Diego and having a look would be fun, but me describing the changes‒not so much.
Madison Bumgarner was on the mound for the Giants. He was dealing. He pitched a one-hitter through the fifth, a three-hitter through the seventh and when he got to the ninth, he’d allowed only four Padres hits‒and not one single run. Zero. Then Matt Kemp spoiled his fun.
You remember Kemp, dontcha? Passably handsome outfielder, used to play for the Dodgers, pretty effective offensively and defensively‒especially when he’s healthy. Last night he flied out, ground out and popped out, then in the ninth, he hit it out. So the Padres scored one run. Big deal. We scored more.
Brandon Belt hit a double and Hunter Pence hit a single to get the second inning started. Not to be outdone, Brandon Crawford hit a home run, putting three on the board for the Giants. This game was definitely not going to be boring.
That was before Bumgarner struck out the Padres first baseman, Wil Myers. Myers–who is from North Carolina, just like our pitcher–swung and missed on a 3-2 count to end the third inning. The problem came when he didn’t walk off right away, but stood at home plate to check the scoreboard for pitch velocity, according to A.J. Cassavell of MLB.com.
Apparently when Myers looked back at Bumgarner, he was getting a little stank-eye from our pitcher, so Myers voiced his opinion of the whole thing. That’s all it took to clear the benches, and although no punches were thrown, both teams made it clear that they were ready to mix it up.
Bumgarner hit a single in the fifth, landing him on first base, but the two players seemed happy to ignore one another. By the ninth inning, after Bumgarner drew a walk landing him on first again, the two were old buddies, holding their own Tar Heel Social Club meeting, laughing and yucking it up. All’s well that ends well.
The Giants scored two more runs‒ Buster Posey doubled in the fifth and Hunter Pence singled in the ninth. Both runners were batted in by Brandon Crawford like the first three. He was our designated RBI guy for the night.
This win makes it six in a row for the Giants. Madison Bumgarner threw his 11th complete game, while striking out 11. The final score was:
Giants 5, Padres 1
Tonight is Petco Park, round 2, with Johnny Cueto on the mound, it oughtta be a good one. Tune in at 7:10 pm to CSN-BA or KNBR 680.