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Giants gifted game-winner in 13th, avoid fifth-straight loss


Sometimes, you need a little luck. Or a lot. The Giants found that in a 2-1 win over the Mets on a long Friday night.

In the top of the 13th, after getting a man on third base with no outs, the Giants looked poised to waste their chance to take a late win from the Mets. Joe Panik fouled out and Buster Posey grounded to first, leading to Chase d’Arnaud being tagged out at home.

Then, in the most absurd of fashions, Brandon Crawford hit a straightforward fly ball toward shallow left field and Mets shortstop Amed Rosario and left fielder Dominic Smith collided. Rosario dropped the ball, allowing Andrew McCutchen to score and give the Giants a 2-1 win.

News broke during the game that McCutchen – who played the full game – would be placed on revocable waivers, according to Andrew Baggarly.

Giants relievers were fantastic. Sam Dyson pitched a shutout sixth after starter Derek Holland allowed a pair of leadoff baserunners before Tony Watson followed suit with a shutout inning in the seventh.

Mark Melancon pitched two shutout innings in the eighth and ninth before Will Smith entered the game for a 1-2-3, two-strikeout 10th. Reyes Moronta entered for the 11th, allowing two baserunners and a near-hit to Jose Reyes that was snatched out of the air by Brandon Crawford to end the inning.

Derek Law, who was called up in place of Ray Black earlier in the day, took the mound for the Giants in the 12th and 13th, retiring his first two batters in Devin Mesoraco and a pinch-hitting Dominic Smith. After getting Michael Conforto to an 0-2 count, Law threw eight straight balls to give the Mets two-straight two-out baserunners, but forced a pop-up from ex-Giant Austin Jackson to end the 12th. He forced a 1-2-3 inning to end the game in the 13th and take a win for himself and the Giants.

The Mets jumped on Holland early, as Amed Rosario singled and scored off a double from Wilmer Flores in the bottom of the first inning to lead 1-0. But after the first, Holland regained control and shut out the Mets until he was relieved in the sixth by Dyson.

The Giants had a perfect opportunity to tag Wheeler for runs in the fifth inning after Brandon Belt singled and Evan Longoria doubled to lead off the inning. This next part might feel like deja vu.

Despite having runners on second and third with no outs, the Giants failed to score a run. Wheeler struck out three straight batters in Steven Duggar, Alen Hanson and Holland.

If that result feels familiar, it’s because the Giants are terrible in those situations. They are the third-worst team in the majors with runners at second and third base, batting a meager .178. The Tampa Bay Rays and Detroit Tigers are the only other teams batting below .200 in the same situation.

It’s a problem that has plagued the Giants all year. In addition to struggling with runners on second and third, the Giants are fifth-worst with runners in scoring position and two outs. But Alen Hanson has often been the exception to that rule.

Hanson is the Giants’ best hitter with runners in scoring position and two outs, batting .342 this season. After striking out to Wheeler in the fifth with a chance to drive home a run on a sac fly, Hanson came back in the seventh as the only batter to nick a run off Wheeler. With Brandon Crawford on third and Brandon Belt at first, Hanson dropped a bloop into the left-field triangle for an unlikely game-tying double.

Wheeler pitched seven innings, finishing with 10 strikeouts, five hits and one earned run.

The win moves the Giants to 62-64, and avoids a five-game losing streak.

 

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