Photo credit: @SFGiants
By Daniel Dullum
Sports Radio Service
Saturday, May 18, 2019
PHOENIX — In 24 hours, things changed for the better offensively for the San Francisco Giants.
On Friday, the Giants couldn’t get a key hit when needed. On Saturday, it was key hits to spare.
San Francisco’s 11-hit attack was backed a strong start from Madison Bumgarner, as the Giants defeated Arizona 8-5.
Seven different Giants drove in runs, led by Brandon Crawford with two. Steven Duggar, Buster Posey, Brandon Belt, Evan Longoria, Mac Williamson and Pablo Sandoval each knocked in a run.
“You could really see the difference tonight,” Giants Manager Bruce Bochy said. “The hitters were doing a nice job of getting on base. We had a lot of big hits, extra-base hits, and we did the little things well.”
Bumgarner (3-4) worked 61/3 innings, giving up three runs on five hits. He struck out six and walked three.
“I thought he threw real good,” Bochy said. “His stuff was good. And with that lineup in this ballpark, a really nice job. And he had good command of his pitches all night.
Longoria’s two-out hit in the first inning drove in Joe Panik, who led off the game with an infield single. The Giants rallied for three runs in the third, with Duggar’s RBI triple, Posey’s run-scoring single and a sacrifice fly to center by Crawford the key blows giving San Francisco a 4-0 lead.
Eduardo Escobar’s 10th home run of the season into the left field seats put the Diamondbacks on the board in the bottom of the fourth. Arizona cut the Giants’ lead to 4-2 in the fifth when Adam Jones singled in Blake Swihart, who led off the inning with a walk.
San Francisco pushed two more runs across in the sixth on an RBI triple by Crawford, who scored two batters later on a single by Williamson.
The Diamondbacks chased Bumgarner in the bottom of the seventh after Nick Ahmed walked and scored from second on pinch-hitter John Ryan Murphy’s double down the left field line.
Adam Jones drove in Carson Kelly (who walked) with a ground out off San Francisco reliever Sam Dyson, pulling Arizona to within 6-4. But with two out in the San Francisco eighth, Sandoval — pinch-hitting for Dyson — hit a solo home run, giving the Giants a 7-4 lead.
“How about Pablo, huh?” Bochy said. “It’s nice to start him, and it’s nice to bring him off the bench to pinch-hit. He’s been the silver lining through our struggles.”
San Francisco extended its lead in the ninth to 8-4 when Brandon Belt’s seventh home run of the season reached the swimming pool in right-center.
Arizona closed its deficit to three when Carson Kelly hit a solo home run in the ninth, but closer Will Smith struck out Alex Avila, Adam Jones and Ketel Marte in what became a non-save situation.
In Sunday afternoon’s series finale, Robbie Ray (3-1, 3.14) starts for the Diamondbacks. San Francisco has yet to announce its starter.
GIANT JOTTINGS: Sandoval’s pinch home run in the eighth inning was the second of his career. The first came on May 8, 2018, at Philadelphia. … Gi Belt’s ninth-inning homer into the Chase Field swimming pool was the second overall of the season. Ex-Giant Hunter Pence hit one earlier this season for Texas. … D-Backs OF Adam Jones has hit safely in his last seven games. … Giants 2B Joe Panik has a streak of reaching base safely in 16 straight games, by hit or walk. … The attendance at Chase Field on Saturday was 25,014; Friday’s attendance was 26,806.
TAGS: San Francisco Giants, Arizona Diamondbacks, Madison Bumgarner, Pablo Sandoval, Brandon Belt, Steven Duggar, Sports Radio Service