Hallelujah! Tyler Colvin found the hit the San Francisco Giants have been searching for, when he singled in two runners during the top of the first, and the Giants went on to defang the Arizona Diamondbacks, 6-4, Saturday night, to finally put an end to the six-game losing streak.
Maybe it was his lifetime 2-4 mark against Arizona; maybe it was the six-game skid; or maybe it was the three-run lead provided for him by the offense in the top of the first. Whatever the reason, Ryan Vogelsong managed to keep the Diamondbacks from busting loose a big inning, going five innings, while allowing four earned runs, on five hits, with three walks and three strikeouts.
Brandon McCarthy started and went five innings for the D-backs, giving up five earned runs, on ten hits, with a walk and two K’s. Coming into the game, McCarthy was 1-9, and I guess that’s what it took. Even at that, the D-backs almost got him off the hook, with some ninth inning drama, putting runners on second and third with two outs, but Sergio Romo got Paul Goldschmidt to line out to Hunter Pence, who made a fine catch going toward center field, to give the Giants the much-needed win.
San Francisco wasted no time in the first inning, when Hunter Pence, Buster Posey and Pablo Sandoval all singled off McCarthy, Pence scoring on Sandoval’s opposite-field single. After Michael Morse bounced back to the pitcher and Brandon Crawford drew a full-count walk, Tyler Colvin gave the club a lift by drilling another opposite-field single, knocking in Posey and Sandoval. Ryan Vogelsong finally brought an end to the inning, by forcing Ehire Adrianza at second, with the bases loaded.
The Giants extended their lead to 4-0 in the second on Sandoval’s two-out single up the middle, giving him two RBI’s in his first two at-bats. The inning ended when Goldschmidt made a dazzling play on Crawford’s sharp grounder right down the line and flipped to McCarthy covering first.
Arizona came back in the bottom of the second with three doubles, the second (Miguel Montero) and third (David Peralta) each producing a run. They would tighten things up to within one run in the fifth on a two-out, two-run single off the bat of Aaron Hill, but he was thrown out at second by Buster Posey, who sent Pence’s throw to Crawford who then tagged Hill out.
Tyler Colvin netted his third RBI in the fifth, when he knocked in Crawford with a grounder to the right side, after Crawford had led off the inning with a triple. Pablo ended up with three hits, Buster Posey had two, and so did Hunter Pence, including a home run in the sixth with no one aboard. It was a mammoth upper deck shot, that might have been the longest ball hit by a Giant this season. We’ll never know because Arizona does not release the distance of opponents’ home runs.
For the D-backs, Randall Delgado pitched the sixth and seventh innings, giving up just the solo home run to Hunter Pence. Matt Stites pitched the eighth and Joe Thatcher pitched a perfect ninth. Of interest to Giants fans is that Roger Kieschnick, just up from triple-A ball, doubled to lead matters off in the ninth for the D-backs.
Tonight, the Giants’ bullpen would not let them down. Jeremy Affeldt pitched the sixth and was pulled with two on and two out in the seventh. After walking Paul Goldschmidt, Jean Machi induced a pop-up to third base from Aaron Hill to end the bases-loaded threat. Santiago Casilla pitched a 1-2-3 eighth, before Romo managed to torture us for a while in the ninth, before getting the save.
There is much more that could be said about this game but just seeing Sergio Romo with a clean-shaven face was enough to indicate that the Giants were done fooling around.
It’s only one game, but we needed it more desperately than can be described. With Los Angeles still four games back, and the Giants back in control, all they have to do is just keep winning two out of three.
For tonight, we’ll settle for one win, and feel pretty good about it.