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Giants rally in eighth inning to down Rockies and climb back above .500

© Ron Chenoy | 2019 Aug 3


COLORADO – In danger of losing three-consecutive games for the first time since June and falling below .500 for the first time since July 20, the Giants rallied to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat with a two-run rally in the eighth inning to beat the Colorado Rockies.

It was Madison Bumgarner’s first start since the team decided to hold onto him and Will Smith at the trade deadline, a decision that was expected given how well the team had played since the start of July, but with the team losing two-straight games and falling back to .500 they needed their ace to get them back on the right track.

The Giants offense struck first with a four-run first inning. Pablo Sandoval doubled to score Mike Yastrzemski and Brandon Crawford singled to send Pablo across the plate. Scooter Gennett punctuated that first-inning rally with a 413-foot homer to right field, his first of the season and of his Giants career. Gennett’s homer was the first by a Giants second baseman since May 28.

A four-run lead is often enough of a cushion for Madison Bumgarner, but it wasn’t tonight.

The Colorado Rockies chipped away against Bumgarner and the Giants defense to get their first run across the plate. That first run came in the second inning. Daniel Murphy doubled, Ian Desmond advanced him to third when Austin Slater made a spectacular leaping grab at the wall to rob him of an extra-base hit, and Murphy was driven in on a groundout from Ryan McMahon.

The score was 4-1 and it felt like the Giants were still in control, but that didn’t last long.

Madison Bumgarner was visibly angry after giving up a run in the second and the Rockies smelled blood in the water. They wanted to do some damage and they did.

They tagged Bumgarner for four more runs. Trevor Story crushed a two-run shot to center field in the third, his fourth-career home run against Bumganer. In the fifth, Charlie Blackmon crushed a solo-shot to center to tie the game, and Nolan Arenado scored on a costly throwing error from Scooter Gennett on a double from Daniel Murphy.

That fifth inning could have been even worse for the Giants, but Steven Duggar saved the day when he robbed Ian Desmond of a two-run homer to kill the rally.

The Rockies had grabbed a 5-4 lead, but the Giants weren’t done yet. The bats were lifeless until the eighth inning, but then that eighth inning rolled around they were wide awake, and they were only down by one run after two excellent innings from Trevor Gott and Sam Coonrod.

Scooter Gennett started off the inning with a strikeout, but Joe Panik stepped in as a pinch-hitter against Carlos Estevez to draw a walk in the next at-bat, and that’s what really got the offense cooking.

With Panik on first base Austin Slater lined a single to center field to put the Giants in scoring position. Bruce Bochy called on Buster Posey to pinch-hit for Sam Coonrod and Kevin Pillar to pinch-run for Panik, a move that worked to perfection.

Posey doubled to right field, allowing both Pillar to score from second base and Slater to score from first, and the Giants had the lead once for the first time since the fifth inning. Posey’s double was his first hit while pinch-hitting this season.

The Giants had the chance to add some insurance runs in both the eighth and ninth innings as they loaded the bases twice, but they ultimately couldn’t score either time.

It was all up to the bullpen to hold that lead for the Giants, and lucky for them, Farhan Zaidi hung onto both Will Smith and Tony Watson at the trade deadline. Garrett Hampson tripled to put pressure on Watson in the eighth, but he got out of the inning scot-free. Will Smith then entered in the ninth and did what he does best: win the game.

He allowed two singles but struck out Chris Iannetta, Trevor Story, and Daniel Murphy as the Giants hung on to win game with a final score of 6-5.

The march towards a Wild Card berth continues as the San Francisco Giants are back above .500 once again as they avoided their third-straight loss.

 

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