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Manny Machado spoils Giants comeback with walkoff

© Orlando Ramirez | 2022 Aug 9

At his introductory press conference, Juan Soto wished opposing pitchers luck. 

Though the immediate results in San Diego have been spotty, Soto and his All-Star running mate Manny Machado rang that confident message true. 

Soto drilled his first home run as a Padre and scored two other times, including on Machado’s walk-off three run shot. 

The Giants again got to closer Josh Hader, erasing a 4-1 deficit in the top of the ninth, but Machado’s bomb made their comeback futile and halted their winning streak at three. Tyler Rogers took the loss as San Francisco (54-56) fell back to 6.5 games behind San Diego in the standings. 

In the 7-4 Giants loss, both teams traded early solo home runs in what began as a pitcher’s duel. 

LaMonte Wade Jr.’s first-inning home run just over Soto’s outstretched — and eventually detached — glove put the Giants ahead 1-0. 

The Giants need several hitters to heat up simultaneously, Wade being one of them. The 2021 Willie Mac Award winner has battled injuries this season and carried a .185 batting average into Tuesday. But over the weekend, Wade hit a double and home run against Oakland, signs he could be finding a rhythm. 

Giants starter Alex Cobb started the Padres with three scoreless frames, increasing San Diego’s scoreless streak to 26 innings across their past four games. 

Then Soto broke the drought by ripping a letter-high sinker for a solo shot down the right field line. The superstar’s first home run as a Padre left his bat at 107.9 mph. 

Soto spiked his bat into the Petco Park grass after his no-doubter. But Cobb got out of the inning, as Mike Yastrzemski robbed Brandon Drury of another solo homer two batters later.

Cobb threw both arms over his head in celebration. He did the same earlier in the game when Joc Pederson made a sliding catch in left. The defense that has let down Cobb so frequently had his back. 

Cobb threw a right-handed fist pump when Thairo Estrada threw to first from his butt to end the fifth inning. That putout stranded runners on the corners and kept the score knotted at one. 

The web gems came one night after the Giants executed the relay throw of the year to preserve a 1-0 shutout win. But they weren’t enough. 

The Padres’ stars chased Cobb out before he could record an out in the sixth inning. Soto doubled, Manny Machado singled him to third, and Josh Bell drove the Giants to their bullpen. Yunior Marte got SF out of the inning, but not before San Diego took a 3-1 lead. 

Soto and Machado scored San Diego’s first three runs. Bell, who came along in the Soto trade, doubled off Dominic Leone and scored the fourth. 

Trailing 4-1 in the ninth, the Giants got to Hader. They loaded the baess with a walk, single and hit-by-pitch. Hader, one of the game’s best closers for the past half-decade, couldn’t throw strikes. 

Austin Wynns, a career .214 hitter, walked in a run. Then Brandon Belt did, too. Even when he punched out J.D. Davis, Hader couldn’t find the zone. Evan Longoria’s sacrifice fly nearly broke the game open, but left fielder Jurickson Profar fully extended to make the catch. Instead of a possibly bases-clearing hit, the Giants entered the bottom half with a tie. 

Then Machado dug in against Rogers with two runners on. He entered Tuesday with five doubles, a triple and three homers in 11 games against the Giants this season. Seemingly every time he steps in, he does damage. 

And damage, he did. His walk-off soared into the upper deck in left field, continuing his dominance and getting San Diego back into the winning column after five straight losses. As encouraging as San Francisco’s success against Hader is, it still came in a loss.

 

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