Belt homers twice in Giants win 7-2 over Rockies

Another one belted San Francisco Giant Brandon Belt watches the ball after tagging it for three run home run in the top of the fifth inning at Coors Field in Denver on Sat Sep 25, 2021 (AP News)

By Jeremy Kahn

On a night where the Colorado Rockies celebrated one of the best players in team history, the San Francisco Giants were trying to make history of their own.

Brandon Belt hit two home runs, helping the Giants to a 7-2 victory over the Rockies at Coors Field and with the victory, coupled with the Arizona Diamondbacks victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers at Chase Field, the Giants lead in the National League West increased to two games with seven remaining and the magic number for the Giants to win the division drops to five.

When Belt his second home run of the game off of Jon Gray in the top of the fifth inning, it was the 29th home run of the season for Belt and the 236th of the season for the Giants, passing the 2001 team for the most in team history.

Belt gave the Giants an early 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning, as he connected for a solo home run off of Gray.

This was the eighth multi-home run game for Belt in his career, as he followed up the solo home run with a three-run home run in the top of the fifth inning.

Prior to the game, the Rockies honored Larry Walker, who was recently inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame, as they retired his number 33. It is just the second number retired in the history of the Rockies, as he joins Todd Helton, whose number 17 was retired by the Rockies on August 17, 2014.

Anthony DeSclafani went just four innings for the Giants, as he was replaced by a pinch-hitter in the top of the fifth inning. Since the month of July, DeSclafani went over the 90-pitch just once for the NL West leaders, who are now 14-4 against the Rockies this season with one more game to go.

Tony Watson picked up his seventh win of the season, as the Giants used six relievers after DeSclafani was lifted in the top of the fifth inning.

In his four innings of work, DeSclafani allowed two runs on five hits, walked one and struck out three in the no-decision.

The Rockies tried to make the game interesting in the bottom of the ninth inning, as they hit three consecutive singles; however, Dominic Leone was able to get out of the jam, when he got C.J. Cron grounded out to end the game.

Gray went 4.2 innings, allowing four runs on five hits, did not walk a batter and struck out five, as his record dropped to 8-12 on the season.

NOTES: Mike Yastrzemski, who left the game on Friday night with a knee injury came off the as a pinch-hitter in the top of the eighth inning and hit a two-run single that extended the Giants lead up to 7-2. Yastrzemski eventually remained in the game following his pinch-hit appearance.

With the 101 wins on the season, the Giants have won 100 or more games eight time in their history, and are tied with the Atlanta Braves and the Dodgers for the fourth-most in Major League history, only the New York Yankees (21), the Oakland Athletics (10) and the St. Louis Cardinals (9) have more 100 plus win seasons.

The Giants were the first team to 50 wins this season, the first to 60 wins, the first to 70, 80, 90 and now the first to 100 wins…the Giants haven’t been the first team to 100 wins since 1913.

UP NEXT: Kevin Gausman goes for his 15th win of the season, as the Giants close out their regular season road schedule. Antonio Senzatela takes the mound for the Rockies in the finale, as he looks for his fifth win of the season.

Giants reach 100 wins on the season, beat Rockies 7-2 to hit three digit mark

San Francisco Giants Kris Bryant flies out in the top of the fourth against the Colorado Rockies on Fri Sep 24, 2021 at Coors Field in Denver (AP News photo)

By Jeremy Kahn

Who would have ever thought that the 2021 San Francisco Giants would do something that the organization as a whole accomplished only seven times prior its 139-year history?

Backed by four home runs, the Giants defeated the Colorado Rockies 7-2 at Coors Field and with the victory, the Giants have won their 100th game of the season. Also, with the Giants maintained their first-place position in the National League West and their magic number lowers to eight.

Tommy La Stella led off the top of the first inning with a home run off of Peter Lambert, who was making his season debut for the Rockies after missing the entire shortened 2020 season due to undergoing Tommy John surgery.

The La Stella home run gave the Giants a quick 1-0 lead; however, the lead would not last long, as the Rockies tied the game in the bottom of the first when Charlie Blackmon hit an opposite field single to score Raimel Tapia with the tying run. Elias Diaz gave the Rockies the lead, when Elias Diaz to right field to score Brendan Rodgers.

Unfortunately, for the Rockies, that lead would only last into the top of the second inning, when Brandon Crawford hit his 22nd home run of the season into the second deck of the right field seats.

Brandon Belt gave the Giants the lead for good in the top of the sixth inning, when he hit his team-leading 27th home run.

Mike Yastrzemski hit the fourth and final home run of the game, as he hit a three-run home run in the top of the seventh inning, as the Giants broke the game wide open. Buster Posey drove in the seventh and final run of the game for the Giants in the top of that same seventh inning, when Wilmer Flores scored.

Alex Wood went just four innings, allowing two runs on six hits, he did not walk a batter and struck out seven; however, he did not fare in the decision, as the game turned into a bullpen game.

La Stella, who hit a home run to lead off the game went 3-for-5 on the evening.

Kervin Castro went two innings, and continues to impress, as he allowed a hit and struck out two and picked up his first Major League victory.

Castro turned the ball over to Tony Watson, who threw a perfect seventh inning and then Tyler Rogers came on in the bottom of the eighth inning, and despite giving up three hits, Rogers struck out two and the Rockies left the bases loaded, when Rogers got Ryan McMahon on a called third strike to end the inning and get out of the jam.

Camilo Doval came on to finish it out for the Giants, and despite giving up a hit to Tapia, Doval got Brendan Rodgers to strikeout for the second out after Rodgers started the night by going 3-for-4 against Giants pitching.

Lambert went the first 3.2 innings for the Rockies in his first start of the Rockies, as he allowed two runs on four hits, walked one and struck out two.

Ashton Goudeau came on to replace Lambert and went 2.1 innings, allowing four runs on four hits, striking out two and gave up two home runs to Belt and Yastrzemski and lost for the first time in his MLB career.

NOTES: This team, who was projected to win 75 games this season became the eighth team to reach the 100-win plateau.

The Giants join the 1904 NY Giants (106), 1905 NY Giants (105), 1912 NY Giants (103), 1962 SF Giants (103), 1993 SF Giants (103), 1913 NY Giants (101) and 2003 SF Giants (100) as previous teams to reach triple digits in wins.

With four more home runs tonight, the Giants have now hit 234 home runs on the season, moving within one of tying the 2001 team for the most home runs by the team in history of the franchise.

Also with the four home runs on the evening, this was the 17th time that the Giants have hit at four home runs or more in a game, stretching their MLB lead up over the Toronto Blue Jays.

UP NEXT: Anthony DeSclafani goes for his 13th win of the season on Saturday night, while Jon Gray will take the mound for the Rockies in search for his ninth win of the season.

Giants drop crucial game 3 to Padres 7-6 in 10th inning stay one game above Dodgers

San Diego Padres Victor Caratini (17) gets congratulations with Fernando Tatis Jr after Tatis scores on an RBI single in the bottom of the 11th inning at Petco Park in San Diego on Wed Sep 22, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Jessica Kwong

The San Francisco Giants lost 7-6 to the San Diego Padres in extra innings at Petco Park on Thursday afternoon.

They blew their chance to sweep San Diego and saw their lead atop the NL West narrow to one game as the defending champion Los Angeles Dodgers beat their opponent on the same day.

The Giants rallied from a couple of deficits but lost on a walk-off infield single from Victor Caratini against Padres right-handed pitcher Dominic Leone.

The Padres scored four times in the first inning off Giants starter Logan Webb. With the bases loaded, Jurickson Profar was hit by a pitch. Trent Grisham hit a sacrifice fly to bring San Diego’s lead up to 2-0. Ha-Seong Kim and Caratini had RBI singles to put the Padres up 4-0.

In the second inning, Mike Yastrzemski hit a home run on a fly ball to right field and LaMonte Wade scored to cut the Padres’ lead to 4-2.

Austin Slater hit a home run on a line drive to left field in the sixth inning and Tommy La Stella and Brandon Belt scored, putting the Giants up 5-4.

But Trent Grisham homered on a fly ball to right field to tie the game and Ha-Seong Kim hit a home run to center field to help San Diego regain a 6-5 lead.

In the seventh inning, La Stella doubled on a line drive to center field and Wilmer Flores scored, tying the game again at 6-6.

Meanwhile, the Dodgers won 7-5 in 10 innings against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.

When Slater hit a three-run homer in the sixth inning, the Giants could see on the out-of-town scoreboard that the Rockies were one out away from beating the Dodgers.

“Our focus was solely on this game, this is a good team across the other side of the field,” Slater said. “But they flash the scores and it’s hard to miss sometimes. You’re aware of it.”

Only nine games are left on the Giants’ schedule and they will finish the regular season facing the Padres again for a three-game series at home.

The Giants (99-54) are just one game ahead of the Dodgers (98-55), meaning the Padres will have a defining role in deciding that fierce division race.

San Francisco starts a three-game series against the Colorado Rockies on Friday. First pitch is at 5:10 p.m.

San Francisco Giants podcast with Michael Duca: Bullpen keeping Giants in the slim hunt with Dodgers in NL West race

San Francisco Giants pitcher Dominic Leone has done a bang up job as a starter and reliever in helping the Giants in their pennant drive (file photo KNBR)

On the Giants podcast with Michael:

#1 Michael talk about Dominic Leone he’s been pitching in the starting role and a reliever he’s 3-4 ERA 1.69 and has been lights out.

#2 Over the last three outings for Leone he’s pitched against the Atlanta Braves twice and the San Diego Padres once and has shut them out each of the one inning appearances he’s made and giving up only one hit.

#3 Michael talk about that crucial sixth and seventh innings last night in San Diego. Where the Giants scored two runs in the sixth and three in the seventh as they won by two runs 8-6 every run and every win counts these days.

#4 Michael, talk about the bullpen strength how they’ve been closing down games in late innings and managing to keep the Giants heads above water and the surging Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West.

#5 Giants conclude their three game series with the Padres today the Giants will start Logan Webb (10-3 ERA 2.79) and for the Padres Yu Darvish (8-10 ERA 4.13) a 1:10 PM PDT

Join Michael for the Giants podcasts each Friday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Giants build big lead and then hang on at the end for 8-6 win over Padres. Magic Number down to 9

Camilia Doval San Francisco Giants reliever reaches for the stars after getting the San Diego Padres Tommy Pham to ground into a top of the fifth inning double play at Oracle Park in San Francisco on Wed Sep 22, 2021 (AP News photo)

by Marko Ukalovic

Torture is back!

The San Francisco Giants had a seven run lead late in the game and then hung on for dear life in a 8-6 victory over the San Diego Padres on Wednesday evening at Petco Park.

With the Los Angeles Dodgers 10-5 loss to the Colorado Rockies, San Francisco gained a game on their NL West rival and are now two games up on the Dodgers with 10 games left to play. In the process, the Giants reduced their magic number to clinching the division to nine.

Scott Kazmir made his first major league appearance since June 4th. The 2020 silver medalist for Team USA this past summer, pitched four strong innings before the wheels came off for him in the fifth inning.

He opened up the fifth inning with a walk, single (which was generously given by the official scorer as the ball hit by pinch hitter Jake Marisnick went under the glove of shortstop Brandon Crawford) and walk to load the bases. Buster Posey was called for catcher interference on a swing by Jake Cronenworth which resulted in the Padres scoring their first run.

Kazmir finished with 4+ innings pitched, allowing an unearned run on four hits while striking out three and walking three batters on 71 pitches.

Despite being a veteran with 12 years of major league experience, Kazmir admitted to having some butterflies before the game and being involved in a pennant race.

“For sure”, said Kazmir. “There’s always butterflies in any big league ballgame, especially in September. The (playoff type of) atmosphere was there. To be in a pennant race like that and to be able to perform like that, it’s a good feeling. Hopefully I can keep progressing and keep getting stronger.”

Camilo Doval, who has been a revelation for Giants manager Gabe Kapler since he’s been called up from Triple-A Sacramento, came in and struck out Manny Machado on three pitches. Then induced Tommy Pham into a 6-4-3 double play to end the inning.

“Doval was the pivotal point of the game,” said Posey. “For him to come in, strike out (Manny) Machado and then induce (Pham to hit into a) double play gave us momentum going forward.”

San Diego went with a bullpen game and opened with Vince Velasquez, who came into the game having given up four runs in four innings in his last start against the St. Louis Cardinals in an 8-2 loss.

Kris Bryant opened up the scoring when hit a one-out bases loaded double that cleared the bases in the first inning to give the Giants a 3-0 lead. Velasquez only lasted one inning.

The Giants tacked on to their lead with two runs in the sixth inning. RBI singles by the Crawford and Mike Yastrzemski gave San Francisco a 5-1 lead. Crawford leads the team with 83 RBI on the season.

San Francisco padded their lead with three runs in the seventh inning. Catcher Buster Posey hit an RBI double down the right field line to score Tommy LaStella. Then Lamont Wade Jr. continued his clutch hitting with an two-run single to right field to score Brandon Belt and Posey and extended the Giants lead to 8-1.

Posey was in a zone as went 4-5 with an RBI and three runs scored as he was a nemesis to the Padres all night long. His fifth and final at bat he just missed a home run as he fly ball to right field was caught at the wall by Will Meyers.

“When he’s getting the ball in the air to the opposite field, on a line, Buster is at his best. Last ball he hit, he didn’t get rewarded for. That was an excellent swing off of a pitcher that’s difficult to get in the air. It’s good signals for Pose,” Kapler said.

San Diego chipped away at their deficit in their half of the seventh inning. Fernando Tatis Jr. hit his National League leading 40th home run to spark a three-run innings off of reliever Jarlin Garcia. RBI-singles by Manny Machado and Eric Hosmer cut the Giants lead in half 8-4.

Hosmer finished the game 4-5 with an RBI and one run scored.

Tony Watson pitched a scoreless eight inning for San Francisco.

Tyler Rogers provided another dose of torture for Giants fan. He gave up two runs in the ninth inning with an RBI groundout from Todd Frazier and and RBI single by Trent Grisham. Tatis Jr. came to the plate as the game winning run with two man on and two out. However Rogers induced Tatis Jr. to fly out to left field to end the game.

GAME NOTES: San Francisco stranded six runners on base. San Diego left 11 runners on base.

The Giants are 9-6 in the season series with the Padres with one more left in San Diego. The Giants finish the regular season with hosting the final three game against the Padres at Oracle Park.

UP NEXT: The Giants close out the three-game series with the Padres on Thursday 9/23 at 1:00pm from Petco Park.

Late night LaMonte comes through again in Giants 6-5 win

San Francisco Giants Brandon Belt slides in safely after Lamonte Wade Jr hits an RBI single in the top of the ninth as San Diego Padres catcher Austin Nola comes up empty handed at Petco Park in San Diego on Tue Sep 21, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Jeremy Kahn

Brandon Belt might have scored the biggest run of his big-league career, when it was needed the most for the San Francisco Giants.

Belt scored on a single by Lamonte Wade, Jr., with one out in the top of the ninth inning, helping the Giants to a come-from-behind 6-5 victory over the San Diego Padres in game one of a pivotal three-game series at Petco Park.

This was a win that the Giants so desperately needed, as they held on to their slim one-game lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers, who defeated the Colorado Rockies 5-4 in 10 innings at Coors Field.

Wade, Jr., came with the big hit just out of the reach of Fernando Tatis, Jr., at shortstop and Belt just beat the throw of Tommy Pham, when Austin Nola was unable to hold to the ball at the plate.

This was the 13th hit in 19 at-bats for Wade, Jr., in the ninth inning or later and has now defeated the entire National League West in the 9th inning.

Belt singled with one out off of Giants closer Mark Melancon, then Buster Posey singled Belt to second and then Wade, Jr., came up with another big hit in the late innings.

Melancon was able to regroup and get Kris Bryant to ground into a double play to end the inning; however, the Giants regained the lead.

Tyler Rogers came on to close out the game for the Giants, and it did not get off to a good start, as Brandon Crawford committed a fielding error on a ball hit by Wil Myers, but then Rogers got Tatis, Jr., to strikeout looking for the first out of the inning to bring up Jake Cronenworth, who singled to put runners on first and second to bring up Manny Machado with the game on the line.

Machado hit a ground ball to Belt, who threw to Crawford for the second out and then got Machado at first base by a step to end the game and give the Giants their 98th win of the season.

Things got to a rousing start for the Giants, as Tommy La Stella led off the top of the first inning and the game with his sixth home run of the season.

After that, it became the Padres home run show, as Machado hit his 25th home run of the season onto Western Metal Supply Company building to tie up the game in the bottom of the first inning.

The Padres took the lead in the bottom of the second inning, as Tatis, Jr., gave the Padres the lead when he singled off of Kevin Gausman to score Trent Grisham.

Machado then hit his second home run of the game in the bottom of the third inning that increased the Padres lead up to 3-1, it was the 26th home run for Machado. Pham then increased the lead up to 4-1 a few batters later, as he hit his 15th home run of the season.

The Giants began to make a comeback that eventually gave them the lead going into the bottom of the sixth inning.

Wilmer Flores cut the Padres lead in half, as he singled to left field to score Evan Longoria and send Mike Yastrzemski to second base, who then scored on a Buster Posey sacrifice fly.

Crawford then got the Giants even in the top of the sixth inning, as he doubled to the opposite field to score Bryant and then Yastrzemski hit a sacrifice fly to give the Giants the lead to score Crawford.

Once again, the Padres tied it up in the bottom of the sixth inning, when Nola hit his second home run of the season and that setup the heroics by Wade in the top of the ninth inning.

Gausman went only four innings, allowing four runs on nine hits, did not walk a batter and struck out three; however, he allowed three home runs and turned the ball over to the bullpen.

Camilo Doval gave up a single in his only inning of work, then Zack Littell gave up the game-tying home run to Nola in the bottom of the sixth inning and that would be the last hit allowed by the bullpen until Rogers gave up the single to Cronenworth in the bottom of the ninth inning.

Doval, Jose Alvarez, Dominic Leone, Tony Watson, who pitched a perfect eighth inning, striking out two on his way to his sixth win of the season and then Rogers picked up his 13th save of the season, despite allowing a single and a huge strikeout of Tatis, Jr., for the first out of the bottom of the ninth inning.

NOTES: This was the Giants 49th win of the season on the road, good enough for their sixth best road record in team history and have 13 out of their last 15 games on the road.

With two more wins, the Giants will reach the 100-win plateau just seven Giants teams in franchise history have won 100 games: 1904 NY Giants (106), 1905 NY Giants (105), 1912 NY Giants (103), 1962 SF Giants (103), 1993 SF Giants (103), 1913 NY Giants (101) and 2003 SF Giants (100).

UP NEXT: Giants will send Scott Kazmir to the mound on Wednesday night, as he looks for his first win of the season, while the Padres will send Vince Velasquez to the hill, as he looks for his fourth win of the season.

The Skinny On The Giants-Dodgers Division Title Race For The Ages: You don’t wanna finish second

By Morris Phillips

You don’t want to finish second. For the Giants and the Dodgers, winning the NL West is paramount.

Here’s why.

Barring a minor miracle–but also a real possibility–the first postseason meeting of the long time rivals begins on Friday, October 8, a full four days after the regular season ends on that previous Sunday. The best case scenario for both teams: they win the NL West outright, and get all four of those days to rest and set up their Operation World Series ’21 war room in which they align their rotations, rest key regulars and stay out of COVID protocols. Beyond that, the NL West winner would have time to develop a strategy to derail their rival in a seven-game series, then roll two more high-level opponents on their way to a Series title.

Now back to the minor miracle/real possibility that could evaporate one of these two 100 plus-win teams before October 8: a loss to the St. Louis Cardinals, the almost certain, second wild card entrant currently riding an eight-game win streak that has all but retired the competition with two weeks remaining in the regular season. What would the Cardinals have to do to pull an upset? Summon the perpetual youth tonic for 40-year old Adam Wainwright and his battery mate, 39-year old Yadier Molina, who would be slotted to pitch and catch the Wednesday, October 6 wild card game as the only pair manager Mike Schildt–or the state of Missouri–would trust in such a situation. In a separate slice of baseball history, Wainwright and Molina have paired as battery mates 298 times. The October 6 clash would see them likely pairing for the 301st time, which ranks fourth in major league history for the most prolific catcher and pitcher pairings.

Wainright (16-7, 2.89 ERA) has a win against both the Dodgers and Giants this season (beating Los Angeles at Busch Stadium on September 8) although he was roughed up in the rematch against the Giants on July 16.

Think the stakes are high in these final two weeks for the Giants and Dodgers? Think higher.

The Giants are trying to secure the apex of their franchise history (which dates back to 1883 as the New York Gothams) by winning a fourth World Series in 12 seasons, a rash of success never accomplished by a franchise that’s won eight titles in 137 seasons.

For the Dodgers, who have had far more success at this level, this would mark some level of redemption after their well-chronicled postseason flame outs beginning in 2013. On the line for the Dodgers: an unprecedented ninth, consecutive division title, back-to-back Series titles, and the fulfillment of their stature as the team widely considered to be Major League baseball’s best.

Currently, the Giants have a one-game lead with 12 games remaining for both contenders. The teams will be on the road this week, and home next week, six road games then six home games. Amazingly, Baseball-Reference–the premiere MLB website chronicling the game’s history and all of its current metrics–favors the Giants to win the division with a 104-58 record, besting the Dodgers, who according to their database, are most likely to finish 103-59.

If you been following this race intently, you know those won-loss figures are extremely conservative and predict that neither team will win at their current clips, which are best described as torrid. The Dodgers since losing six of nine (four of those six losses to the Giants) at the end of July, have won 34 of 45. The Giants have won 13 of their last 17 ballgames after a four-game losing streak spanning the end of August and beginning of September.

Most likely, both managers (Gabe Kapler and Dave Roberts) are hoping for fast finishes with a record of 9-3 or better. For the Giants (97-53) that’s the safe spot. 106 wins should be the number the Dodgers can’t match. Of course, 105 might be just what the doctor ordered for the Dodgers (96-52). Obviously, it’s just that close.

Now for what might happen after game 162 with the caveat that neither of these teams is fearful of playing a big game in the other team’s ballpark. Both have had too much success, and have won too consistently (with pitching) to feel any other way. That’s why one (Los Angeles) or both teams may not scared to finish second, and get ready for the postseason without the burden of overusing their bullpens, starters or key starters.

But here’s why they would.

Playing on Monday–Game 163–burns a critical starter who would otherwise be primed to pitch Game 1 of the NLDS. For the Giants, based on how the rotations are set up (and there’s little reason for either team to dramatically juggle their rotations with the aces in line to pitch the final weekend or on that following Monday) Logan Webb would likely be a one-game playoff starter, Julio Urias (18-3, 2.99, the NL Cy Young favorite) would be most likely for the Dodgers.

The loser of Game 163 would then host the Wild Card game Wednesday and assume the challenge presented by the Cardinals. Then after burning two prime starters, they would open the NLDS as the visitor on Friday.

Does the second place scenario offer a reasonable path for success? Sure, for either of these balanced clubs. But potentially, playing eight, consecutive Dodgers-Giants games doesn’t set you up to play exceptional baseball for three weeks–against two, more formidable opponents–after that.

So, in conclusion… if 2021 is your year, the “your” part starts now.

And the quote of the weekend from Kris Bryant of the Giants: “I feel like we’ve been playing great baseball, and they have been matching us. That’s annoying.”

On Tuesday, the Giants open up a three-game set in San Diego against the frustrated, fussing, faltering Padres with Kevin Gausman facing Joe Musgrove. Gausman will be pitching with four days rest, Musgrove with five.

San Francisco Giants podcast with Charlie O: Belt seeing ball well; Wood looks like he never missed a step great start on return

San Francisco Giants slugger Brandon Belt arrives in the dugout after hitting a forth inning two run home run against the San Diego Padres on Mon Sep 13, 2021 at Oracle Park in San Francisco (AP News photo)

San Francisco Giants podcast with Charlie O:

#1 Charlie, the Giants in this last homestand split four with the San Diego Padres and won the three game series from the Atlanta Braves. Both clubs could give the Giants fits but manager Gabe Kapler had to be pretty happy with the way they played.

#2 Brandon Belt has been on a tear lately on he nearly hit two home runs on Thursday clearing the fence once and hitting into a double that look like it had the distance. Later in the game in the sixth Padres right fielder Jurickson Profar caught a Belt drive in deep right center.

#3 You have to hand it to the Giants pitching staff on Saturday for the fine piece of work they turned in getting a great start out of Alex Wood who just came out of Covid 19 quarantine and pitched three innings four strike outs, Wood was followed by six relivers who combined to shut out the Atlanta Braves on Saturday 2-0.

#4 Giants pitcher Johnny Cueto’s rehab from an elbow injury is coming along Cueto played catch for the second day in a row throwing some 120 feet. The Giants are hoping to see him back out on the hill on Sep 27 and 28th he will be throwing in bullpen sessions and looking past Sep 27 the Giants would like to get him ready for post season.

#5 Former San Francisco Giants owner Bob Lurie was on hand to be honored on the Giants Wall of Fame. Lurie who saved the Giants from moving to Toronto in 1976 when he purchased the team with the late Bud Herseth. Later Lurie sold the team to the late Peter Magown and the late Walter Shorenstein at the end of the 1992 season preventing the Giants from moving to Tampa Bay. Giants CEO Larry Baer said of Lurie, “Bob’s fingerprints are all over Oracle Park”

Charlie O is filling in for Morris Phillips for the Giants podcasts heard Mondays at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Rosario goes cycling in Braves victory 3-0

Eddie Rosario who hit for the cycle for the Atlanta Braves is jubilant after hitting a triple against the San Francisco Giants in the fifth inning at Oracle Park in San Francisco on Sun Sep 19, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Jeremy Kahn

SAN FRANCISCO-Wouldnt you know that it would be a former member of the San Francisco Giants that cost them a big weekend sweep.

Adam Duvall hit a two-run home run off of Anthony DeSclafani in the top of the seventh inning, helping the Atlanta Braves to salvage the finale of the three-game series with a 3-0 victory over the Giants before a crowd of 32,210 at Oracle Park.

Max Fried was absolutely fantastic for the Braves, as he went seven innings, allowing zero runs on three hits, walking just one and striking out five on his way to raising his record to 12-7 on the record and with the win, the Braves will remain in first place over the Philadelphia Phillies.

On the other side of things, the Giants lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers was reduced to one game in the National League with the loss and the Dodgers 8-5 victory over the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ballpark.

It was a huge day for Rosario, who hit for the cycle, as he went 4 for-4 on the afternoon against Giants pitching. Rosario came up in the top of the ninth inning with a chance at the getting the cycle, and got it when he singled off of Kervin Castro. Rosario doubled in the second, tripled in the fifth, homered in the seventh and singled in the ninth to complete only the second cycle since the ballpark opened on April 11, 2000.

This was the fourth cycle of the season in Major League Baseball this season, as Trea Turner, then of the Washington Nationals, Jake Cronenworth of the San Diego Padres and Rosarios teammate Freddie Freeman also hit one and it was the 10th cycle in Braves history.

DeSclafani went the first six innings and was looking fantastic until he gave a double to Austin Riley that Austin Slater brought back into the ballpark like Steven Duggar did with a ball hit by Jorge Soler. In all, DeSclafani went six innings, allowing two runs on six hits, did not walk a batter and struck out six and his record fell to 12-7 on the season.

Immediately following the Duvall home run off of DeSclafani, Zack Littell came on and was greeted rather unceremoniously, as Rosario made it back-to-back home runs to lengthen the Braves lead.

Unfortunately for the Giants, they were unable to get anything going against Fried, who baffled them on all afternoon.

Former Dodgers outfielder and Bay Area Joc Pederson, who went to Palo Alto High School went 2-for-4 with a single and a double.

With a chance to break the game wide open in the top of the eighth inning, after Ozzie Albies and Freddie Freeman each singled off of Jose Alvarez with one out in the inning, Camilio Doval came on and was able to get out of the jam, as he got Riley to fly out to Darin Ruf in left field for the second out of the inning and then Doval struck out Duvall to end the inning.

Former Giants closer Will Smith came on in the bottom of the ninth inning and retired the Giants in order to get his 33rd save.

NOTES: Eric Byrnes came up with the only other cycle in the history of the 21-year old ballpark, when completed the cycle on June 29, 2003 as a member of the Oakland Athletics, when the ballpark was then known as Pacific Bell Park.

Byrnes went 5-for-5 on the afternoon, with a single, two doubles, a triple and a home run in a 5-2 win over the Giants.

Felix Rodriguez gave up the triple that Byrnes needed in the top of the ninth inning to complete the cycle.

UP NEXT: After an off-day on Monday, the Giants will open their final road trip of the regular season, as they head off on a two-city, six-game road trip to San Diego to face the San Diego Padres on Tuesday night, and then head to Colorado to face the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field beginning on Friday night.

Casali drives in both runs in Giants win 2-0

San Francisco Giants hitter Curt Casali swings for a two RBI single as Atlanta Braves catcher Travis d’Arnau looks on in the fourth inning at Oracle Park in San Francisco Sat Sep 18, 2021 (AP News photo)

By Jeremy Kahn

SAN FRANCISCO-Alex Wood made his return to the starting rotation, but his return was a short one.

Wood, who was reinstated from the injured list prior to the game went only three innings, allowing zero runs on zero hits, walking no one, striking out four and hit by a batter and the San Francisco Giants defeated the Atlanta Braves 2-0 before a crowd of 32,058 at Oracle Park.

With the victory, the Giants maintained their two-game lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers, who defeated the Cincinnati Reds 5-1 earlier on Saturday at Great American Ballpark.

On the other side of things, this was the fourth loss in a row for the Braves and their lead in the National League East now stands at one game over the Philadelphia Phillies, who have won four in a row.

The Giants finally got to Charlie Morton in the bottom of the fourth inning, Curt Casali hit a two-run single to right field that scored both LaMonte Wade, Jr., and Brandon Crawford with what proved to be the only runs of the game.

Wade, Jr., walked to lead off the inning, then Crawford singled to right field to send Wade, Jr., down to second base. The duo then advanced an additional 90 feet, when Mike Yastrzemski dropped down a perfect sacrifice bunt that he nearly beat out and then Casali hit the two-run single.

Once again, the Giants bullpen was dazzling in relief of Wood, as the combination of Zach Littell, Jay Jackson, Jarlin Garcia, Jose Alvarez, Tyler Rogers and Dominic Leone combined to go the final five innings, allowing zero runs on five hits, walking three and striking out five.

Morton went the first five for the Braves, as he allowed two runs on four hits, three walks and struck out three.

It looked like the Braves took a 1-0 lead in the top of the fourth inning, as Jorge Soler it looked like he hit his 24th home run of the season; however, Steven Duggar robbed him of the home run, when he brought the ball back into play and it was called a double off of Littell, who then gave up a single to Freddie Freeman.

Littell was able to get out of the inning unscathed, as he struck out Austin Riley on a foul tip that was reviewed and confirmed after 67 seconds to be the third strike, then Littell struck out both Adam Duvall and Travis dArnaud to get out of the jam.

With the Giants scoring the two runs in the bottom of the fourth inning, it gave the win to Littell and he raised his record to 4-0 on the season and Leone, who came on to close the game picked up his second save of the season.

NOTES: Wood was reinstated, as he started the game for the Giants, to make room for Wood, Sammy Long was optioned to Sacramento and Chadwick Tromp was designated for assignment.

The Giants home run streak came to a halt at 12 consecutive games (26 home runs overall) and this was the longest streak by the team since they hit home runs in 13 straight games from June 25-July 12 of 2019 and hit 25 home runs during the streak.

When Donovan Solano hit his pinch-hit home run in the bottom of the ninth inning on Friday night, it was the 16th pinch-hit home run of the season for the team and are one shy of the Major-League record set by the St. Louis Cardinals in 2017, when they hit 17.

The Giants record of 97-52 thru 149 games is the best by the team since they moved to California in 1958, passing both the 1962 and 1993 team that was 93-56 thru 149 games.

This was the 1,250th win by the Giants over the Braves all-time and have lost 1,097 times and tied 26 times.

UP NEXT: Anthony DeSclafani goes to the mound for the Giants, as they look for the sweep and DeSclafani goes for his 13th win of the season, while the Braves will send Max Fried to the hill, as he looks for his 12th win of the season.