Many Vegas sports books predicted the Giants would win 73 games in 2021. If they lose the next 48, Vegas will be right.
San Francisco’s magical season from nowhere continued on Wednesday night with another win over the D-Backs, 7-2. The victory, played in front of a sparse 20,037 at Oracle Park, is the Giants’ 14th over Arizona in 16 games this season.
The game was defined by the Giants offense, their lineup combining for four home runs and 14 hits against the Diamondbacks best starting pitcher, Merrill Kelly.
San Francisco’s MVPs again showed why they should be considered for the NL crown.
Brandon Crawford hit his first home run in over a month, an absolute missile to left-center that showed how impressive his power has been this season. It’s his 19th homer of the season, two shy of his career high of 21 that he hit in 2015.
Buster Posey also had a display of incredible power, an opposite field jack into the arcade that gave the Giants a 3-1 lead in the third. It’s his 15th of the season and moved his OPS to near an insane 1.000.
If Buster Posey had enough plate appearances to quality for the league lead, here's what the current MLB OPS leaders would look like
1. Vlad Guerrero Jr. (1.028)
2. Fernando Tatis Jr. (1.024)
3. Shohei Ohtani (1.017)
4. Buster Posey (.996)
— Kerry Crowley (@KO_Crowley) August 12, 2021
The turning point of the game took place in the fourth inning. With the bases loaded and one out, the Diamondbacks elected not to pinch hit for the struggling starter Kelly. The decision was curious with Arizona trailing 2-3, and considering the usually terrific Kevin Gausman appeared to have lost his release point.
It backfired badly. Kelly hit into a double play ending the inning. Then in the bottom half, Kelly gave up a two-run homer to LaMonte Wade Jr. (14), a particularly amusing one that bounced off the glove of Ketel Marte before going over the fence. The jack gave the Giants a 5-2 lead. Kelly would last just one more inning before being pulled in the sixth.
LaMonte Wade Jr.'s hit becomes a homer after bouncing off Ketel Marte's glove 🤯pic.twitter.com/QMy8KsvVXw
— KNBR (@KNBR) August 12, 2021
Though Gausman struggled by his standards (5.0 IP, 4 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 4 BB, 5 K) he got it done with the bat. First with a RBI single through the middle of the infield that gave the Giants a 2-1 lead in the second, and then with another single through the hole on the right side of the infield in the fourth before Wade’s homer. Gausman, who entered this season with two career hits, is 7-for-36 in 2021.
Gausman’s performance on the mound was strange. It started out looking like it would be one of his best. The right-hander struck out the side in the first inning and flashed the nastiest version of his splitter, getting two swinging punch-outs. He never quite looked the same after that, completely losing his control in both the second and fourth innings.
Alex Dickerson added a fourth home run for the Giants in the 8th, a pinch-hit splash-hit for some late game fireworks. It’s the 90th splash hit in the history of the ballpark.