The SF Giants had plenty of highlights this week, but one blast gave them the lead in a key series against the San Diego Padres.
SF Giants Highlight: Austin Slater’s Go-Ahead Blast
Outfielder Austin Slater has had several clutch hits in the Padres series, but his home run on Friday night helped the Giants notch the 5-4 victory. San Francisco got out to an early 4-0 lead against the Padres, but San Diego snuck back into the game after Anthony DeSclafani ran out of gas, giving up three earned runs across 5.1 frames.
One of DeSclafani’s runs scored after he departed and was replaced by Sam Selman. Selman yielded a two-run home run to Eric Hosmer to bring the game to a 4-4 tie. The tie did not last long. In the bottom of the seventh, Slater stepped into the batter’s box and worked himself into a favorable 2-1 count. The right-handed bat slammed a 93-MPH fastball from Keone Kela over the right-field wall to give the Giants the 5-4 edge:
It was nerve-racking, but the Giants held onto the lead to capture the victory against a tough Padres lineup. Slater’s clutch hitting continued into Saturday as he registered two more hits with three RBI, including a booming blast to center field.
On the year, the 28-year-old has slashed .230/.323/.414 (109 OPS+) with four home runs and 11 RBI across 99 plate appearances. Interestingly, he has also swiped six bags in six opportunities while proving to be an excellent baserunner.
Furthermore, Slater continues to handle left-handed pitching well as he has posted a stout .883 OPS in 41 plate appearances against southpaws. That is a role he excels in, but the Giants seem interested in seeing how he fares against righties as well, and he has generated a .640 OPS while facing right-handed pitching in 58 plate appearances this year.
Nevertheless, Slater’s bat has played an important role in this series. His blast against the Padres on Friday helped seal the victory and was one of the many highlights of the week.