Talk about edge of your seat, nail biter, page-turning baseball. Ok. The only page I was turning was my scorecard. But I wasn’t so much as turning as I was wringing it out like it was a handkerchief and it was the only thing that kept me from falling off my seat.
The Giants owned the game from the first inning when Hunter Pence recorded the first hit of the game, through the second when Brandon Crawford led off with a solo home run, all the way until the eighth.
The A’s scored a run in the eighth, but the Giants took it right back in the bottom of the inning. Brandon Belt led off with a base hit, advanced to third on Hunter’s awesome double and scored on Eduardo Nunez‘s ground force out that sent Crawford back to the bench. Crawford reached on the new “no pitch intentional walk” rule.
Jeff Samardzija pitched five innings of practically perfect baseball. He allowed one hit and issued one walk, but not a single run. He struck out six. Hunter Strickland allowed the only A’s run, but it was unearned.
Derek Law pitched the ninth inning. The one that had us all hanging on by a thread, holding our collective breath between pitches. He struck out the first guy he faced. Then he gave up back-to-back base hits. Then another strike out. Followed by a walk. Yes, sir, yes, sir–the three bags were full. And the next hitter sent a 96 mile an hour four-seam fastball straight up the middle. It would have been a base hit, scoring at least one, maybe two runs. But Crawford came from out of nowhere, snagged the ball cleanly and air-mailed it to Belt for the third out. Game over.
Ok, go ahead and breathe. Get some oxygen if you have to. All I’m saying is this–if we were going to name an MVP for this game? Brandon Crawford gets it. By a lot of hair.
Saturday’s game is at noon–look to your left, it’s all there!
A note about the Opening Day roster–Alex P. called today’s lineup “Opening Day’ish.” Matt Cain will be the fifth starter. Ty Blach will be in the bullpen. Chris Marrero made the cut along with: Nick Hundley, Conor Gillaspie, Aaron Hill and Gorkys Hernandez.
31 March 2017