SF Giants Rattled the Snakes

09-09-san-francisco-giants-v-arizona-20160910-013819-723Here we go again. Up, down, up, down. Does anybody have some spare Dramamine? I get the feeling we’re going to need it for the rest of the season. Friday’s game was another roller coaster ride.

The Giants scored first in the top of the second. Hunter Pence hit a single, while Brandon Belt and Joe Panik drew walks to load the bases. Then Eduardo Nunez hit a high sac fly to score Hunter and put the Giants on the board.

Madison Bumgarner pitched an ok game, he had a couple of trouble spots. But he struck out nine. In the second, he walked the Arizona first baseman–their big slugger–Paul Goldscmidt, and then gave up a home run scoring two. It was ruled a home run after replay review because the ball was caught by a fan as the ball came down near the rail. I guess the video boys in New York figured it would have gone out. Personally I think it might have fallen inside. But what do I know? I’m a Giants fan.

It happened again in the third. Bumgarner gave up a single and Arizona’s next hitter, a September call-up from the Reno Aces, stepped up and hit a two run homer, giving the Snakes a three run lead.

The Giants got two of them back in the fourth–anybody dizzy yet?–Hunter drew a walk and advanced to second on Belt’s single. Panik drove Hunter home with a single to right. Eduardo Nunez doubled scoring Belt. They scored another run in the sixth–tying the score–when Hunter hit a single, advanced to second on a throwing error and scored on another Belt single.

The Giants scored the go ahead run in the seventh when Angel Pagan drove a solo home run to the left. Problem is Arizona tied it up in the bottom of the inning. The score stayed tied through the ninth.

Hunter Strickland pitched the ninth and Hunter Pence saved our bacon when he made a great catch–he caught a line drive just above the dirt, inches from being a triple. I started to have heart palpitations. I think he might have an imprint on his face from running into the bullpen fence. Pence on the fence. Again.

And it’s on to extra innings.

The Giants loaded the bases in the top of the tenth. Brandon Crawford drew a walk, Pence doubled and Belt was walked intentionally. Panik hit into a force out that caught Crawford at home. Bases loaded again. Arizona changed pitchers and their new guy threw a wild pitch that allowed Hunter to score the go ahead run. Nunez struck out and Conor Gillaspie popped out to end the inning. We got this one, right? RIGHT??

Not so much. Santiago Casilla was brought in to pitch the bottom of the tenth. By that time I was breathing into a paper bag. Casilla got the first guy with a ground out. The next kid up has faced Casilla seven times before and hit three home runs off him. He did it again–make that four home runs–to tie the game in the tenth. Casilla hit the next batter–the slugger, Goldschmidt–who was given first and stole second, putting the winning run in scoring position. Their catcher was up next and he flied out, allowing Goldschmidt to advance to third. A ground out to Panik got Casilla out of the inning.

The Giants tried, but didn’t score any runs in the 11th. Denard Span and Pagan drew walks, Span advanced to third on Buster’s fly out, but got caught at home on when Crawford hit into a fielder’s choice.

Joe Nathan pitched the bottom of the 11th, he gave up a single, the runner advanced to second on a wild pitch and moved to third on a fly out. The winning run was at third with one out. By this time I was ready to switch to an oxygen tank or call 911. I would have called the paramedics, but I wasn’t going to leave the game. Roll out the oxygen tank.

In the 12th Belt walked and Panik singled. Kelby Tomlinson singled scoring Belt, which turned out to be the scoring run and making Kelby our hero again, repeating his game-winning RBI from Tuesday. Respect the Specs.

Cory Gearrin pitched to the first batter in the twelfth and struck him out. Javy Lopez was brought in and Cory moved to left field. Hunter gave Cory a little crash course in playing the outfield as Span looked on. Lopez walked the only batter he faced. Cory went back to the mound and Gorkys Hernandez came in to play left.Cory was able to get the outs needed to end the game. The final score was:

Giants 7, Arizona 6

To steal a line from Kuiper last week, I thought I was gonna barf. But Cory finished it off to get the save. Joe Nathan got the win.

Saturday’s game starts at 5:10 pm with Johnny Cueto on the mound. You can watch the game on CSN-BA or hear it on KNBR 680. I can’t take another game like Friday’s.  I hope they have cable at the hospital. I don’t think I can sit through another game like that unless I’m hooked up to oxygen, an EKG and an IV.

After I recovered my breathing, I looked around and saw that we are a half game up on the Mets–we would have dropped half a game if we’d lost Friday–and a game over St. Louis for the Wild Card spot. Miami beat LA, dropping the LA lead in the NL West to four games ahead of us. This is why we Don’t Stop Believing.

Toni Cecchetti

9 September 2016


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