Giants outlast Diamondbacks in five-hour contest

By DANIEL DULLUM
Sports Radio Service
Friday, July 17, 2015

PHOENIX, Arizona – Over the course of the 5 hours and 11 minutes it took to play this game, even with the new rules to speed things up, San Francisco stranded 15 baserunners. But the Giants pushed a run across when they needed to as they outlasted the Arizona Diamondbacks 6-5 in a 12-inning contest at Chase Field.

All-Star shortstop Brandon Crawford, who went 3-for-6 with a pair of doubles and a run batted in, scored what became the game-winning run in the top of the 12th inning on a throwing error by Diamondbacks shortstop Cliff Pennington.

Crawford, Joe Panik, Matt Duffy and Hunter Pence each collected four hits in the Giants’ 16-hit attack, while the bullpen did the rest, giving up one run in the last eight innings. Pence’s two-run home run sparked a three-run rally in the seventh.

“What a great game. The guys fought hard and it was a great win,” Giants Manager Bruce Bochy said. “It had everything. A great comeback by us, (the Diamondbacks) had the winning run on base, it was a hard fought game on both sides.

“Crawford put on a show. What a beautiful game he had. It was fun to watch,” Bochy continued. “A great game by a great ballplayer; that’s why he made the All-Star team. And Panik did a terrific job. Everybody contributed. We had a lot of good things happen.”

David Peralta led Arizona with three of the Diamondbacks’ 14 hits with A.J. Pollock, Paul Goldschmidt, Wellington Castillo and Chris Owings with two hits each. But the Snakes stranded 11 baserunners, six in the last five innings.

Ryan Vogelsong (7-6) – the 10th pitcher of the night for San Francisco – picked up the win, his first in relief since 2005 and his first win since June 24 against San Diego. In his two innings of work, Vogelsong, who was moved to the bullpen after the All-Star break to clear space in the rotation for Tim Hudson’s return from the disabled list, struck out two, walked one and gave up two hits while holding Arizona scoreless.

“It’s a little easier to get a win this way, in two innings,” Bochy said. “He came out with great stuff and good command. He hasn’t had a lot of success coming out of the pen, but this should do a lot more for him.”

“For Vogey to come in for two innings and do what he did, it’s not always that easy to do,” Giants starting pitcher Matt Cain, who wound up with a no-decision, said. “He hasn’t been in for a long time, and for him to come in and be really sharp was really nice.”

San Francisco (48-43) surged ahead in the 12th when Crawford singled, advanced to second on a passed ball during Gregor Blanco’s at-bat, and scored on what was supposed to be a sacrifice bunt by Vogelsong. When Vogelsong’s bunt eluded losing pitcher Randall Delgado, the ball found a gap in the defense, allowing the pitcher to reach on an infield single, loading the bases.

Angel Pagan then grounded to reserve shortstop Cliff Pennington, whose errant throw home short-hopped catcher Wellington Castillo, allowing Crawford to score the go-ahead run. With the bases still loaded, Joe Panik struck out and Matt Duffy grounded out to short, but the Giants took a 6-5 lead into the bottom of the 12th.

Delgado (4-3) was the seventh D-Backs pitcher in the game.

In the Arizona 12th, Paul Goldschmidt led off with a single up the middle, but was erased when Yasmany Tomâs grounded to Panik for a double play. After Jake Lamb walked and Castillo singled to right, Chris Owings grounded into a force out at second, ending the game.

Both teams were scoreless in the eighth, ninth, 10th and 11th innings.

San Francisco tied the game at 5-5 with three runs in the top of the seventh. Panik started the rally when he singled and moved to third on a Duffy base hit, then scored on Buster Posey’s sacrifice fly to right. Pence followed with a two-run home run, his fourth of the season, a line shot just past the 413-foot marker in right-center field that took starting pitcher Matt Cain off the hook.

“Early on, Matt made a few mistakes, but his last inning was his best. That was the Matt that we know,” Bochy said. “He was missing spots, but in this ballpark, he helped keep us in the game.”

San Francisco reliever Sergio Romo retired the D-Backs in order in the bottom of the eighth. In the Giants ninth, Arizona closer Brad Ziegler returned the favor.

With one out in the Arizona ninth, lefthander Javier Lopez replaced Romo on the mound. Peralta struck out, and righthander Yusmeiro Petit came on to face Goldschmidt, who reached on a Texas League single to left-center. But Tomâs stuck out to send the game into extra innings.

Arizona (42-46) used its All-Star tandem to take a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first. Pollock doubled, moved to third and scored from third on a sacrifice fly to right by Goldschmidt.

The Giants tied the game at 1-1 in the top of the second when Hunter Pence singled and scored on a double by Crawford.

Cain continued to struggle in the bottom of the third, when the Diamondbacks roughed him up for two more runs to surge ahead 3-1. Pollock doubled to left-center and scored when Peralta tripled to center. Goldschmidt delivered a sacrifice fly to center, scoring Peralta.

A solo homer by Chris Owings leading off the Arizona fourth extended the Diamondbacks’ lead to 4-1, prompting a visit to the mound from San Francisco pitching coach Dave Righetti. Cain, who threw 99 pitches, stayed through the fifth inning, giving up four earned runs on eight hits while striking out five with no walks.

“It was a little bit hit-and-miss early,” Cain, who was reinstated off the 15-day disabled list (flexor tendon strain) on July 2, said. “I made some bad mistakes that they hit really well. You don’t want to make those kinds of mistakes out there and (Arizona) has too many good hitters to take advantage of it.”

San Francisco cut the D-Backs’ lead to 4-2 in the top of the fifth when, with Pence batting, Arizona starter Robbie Ray uncorked a wild pitch, allowing Panik to score from third. Panik had singled and advanced to third on base hits by Duffy and Posey.

Arizona added its fifth run in the sixth off Giants reliever Jean Machi, who replaced Cain. Castillo doubled to right and scored on Aaron Hill’s double. After that, the Giants bullpen committee of George Kontos, Josh Osich, Hunter Strickland, Sergio Romo, Javier Lopez, Petit, Santiago Casilla and Vogelsong held the Diamondbacks scoreless on four of their 14 hits, while logging a combined nine strikeouts and three walks.

“Our bullpen did a tremendous job,” Cain said. “To come in and shut the door, just giving up the one run in the sixth inning, the rest of the guys just went about their business. They got in some trouble, but picked each other up. Hunter (Pence) did the same thing with a great night for us. That two-run homer was huge.”

GIANT JOTTINGS: Giants LHP Jeremy Affeldt (left shoulder strain) began his rehab assignment Thursday with Triple-A Sacramento, tossing one scoreless inning at Tacoma. … An announced crowd of 26,922 braved the 82 degrees and 44 percent humidity to attend Friday’s game. … At the end of seven innings on Friday, the summary lines for both teams were identical – 5 runs, 11 hits, no errors, seven left on base. … Beginning with Friday’s game, the Giants will play 16 of their next 22 games – and 23 of their next 35 – on the road. … The Giants and the Tampa Bay Rays are the only teams to have their first 18 games after the All-Star break all against teams at or below .500. … Posey has hit safely in 15 of his last 16 contests. He’s hitting .416 with 17 RBIs during that stretch. … Cain is four wins shy of becoming the sixth pitcher In the Giants’ San Francisco-era history to reach 100 victories. He would join Juan Marichal (238), Gaylord Perry (134), Kirk Rueter (105), Mike McCormick (104) and Tim Lincecum (108). … Saturday night’s starters are a pair of righthanders – Jake Peavy (0-4, 4.71) for the Giants and Chase Anderson (4-3, 3.91) for the D-Backs. Game time is 5:10.

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