San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey goes deep in the fifth inning for his 14th home run of the season against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Oracle Fire Park on Tue Aug 10, 2021 (AP News photo)
by Marko Ukalovic
SAN FRANCISCO—Oracle Park may have to be rebranded as a theme park instead of a ballpark.
The San Francisco Giants certainly did their part in giving their fans a roller coaster of a ride in its 8-7 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday evening.
Kris Bryant came up in the bottom of the ninth inning with two man on base with two out. On the first pitch hit a hard shot to the right side of the infield. The ball caromed off Diamondbacks first baseman Christian Walker’s glove. By the time he was able to recover, his throw to first was not in time to get Bryant, whose walk off error allowed Lamont Wade Jr. to scored from third base sending the home crowd happy and the home team a big sigh of relief.
San Francisco has won three games in a row and maintained its four game lead over the Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League West. Arizona has lost three games in a row and five of its past six.
The game didn’t look like it was going to have a dramatic ninth inning after the Giants scored four runs in the first inning off of starter Zach Gallen. San Francisco received three consecutive clutch hits with two outs with back to back doubles by Bryant and Mike Yastrzemski. Alex Dickerson completed the rally with an RBI single.
Giants catcher Buster Posey hit his 14th home run of the season in the fifth inning to what looked to have been an insurmountable lead.
Posey reached base in all five of his plate appearances, going 2-2 with three walks, three runs scores and a RBI. Yastrzemski had a nice rebound game going 2-4 with two RBI and a run scored.
San Francisco (72-41) starter Alex Wood cruised through the Diamondbacks lineup in the first five innings, only giving up one hit. However the wheels fell off the bus quickly for the veteran left-hander in the sixth when Arizona evened the game by putting up a five spot in the sixth inning.
Arizona (35-79) got the rally started when Gallen hit a double over the head of Dickerson’s head in left field. That seem to have rattled Wood as he gave up back to back doubles to Nick Ahmed and Ketel Marte. Carson hit an RBI triple that was just out of the diving reach of right fielder Wade Jr. Asdrubal Cabrera smacked a two-run home run to left center field, his seventh of the season, to complete the five-run inning.
Wood finished with five earned runs on six hits while striking out five batters and no walks.
“He was really effective until that inning,” said Giants manager Gabe Kapler of Wood’s outing. “He was also efficient. He had plenty of pitches to work with. They just started banging him around the ballpark a little bit and it happened pretty quickly.”
The Giants rallied for two runs in the bottom of the eighth when Brandon Crawford hit a double to score Posey, who walked to open up the inning. Sean Poppin came in relief of Joe Mantiply. His pickoff attempt of Yastrzemski bounced over the glove of Walker and down the right field line as Crawford scored easily to give the Giants a 7-5 lead.
“Crawford’s at bat with Mantiply (in the eight inning) stands out for me. (He) goes down 0-2 and hangs in there, battles through the at bat, and gets as big as any hit that we got all night,” said Kapler.
Veteran closer Jake McGee came in to close out the game in the ninth. The normally reliable closer struggled with his location and left the ball up numerous times during the inning where he allowed two hits and two walks to four of the first five batters. Ahmed’s sacrifice fly to left field tied the game at seven and ended the night for McGee, who blew his third save of the season.
Zach Littell recorded the final out in the ninth inning.
Gallen finished the evening going six innings giving up five earned runs on seven hits while striking out seven and walking one batter.
GAME NOTES: San Francisco left seven men on base. Arizona left four men on.
Giants third base coach Ron Wotus celebrated his 2000th win in a Giants uniform. The players and coaching staff toasted his milestone after the game in the clubhouse.
“I’m honor that they’re even acknowledging it with me as a coach and not a manager,” said Wotus. “I think it speaks volumes with the managers I have worked for here and the players that have come through here in the success of the organization has really put me in a position to have 2000 wins in this uniform.”
San Francisco recalled reliever Camilo Doval from Triple-A Sacramento. To make room for Doval, reliever John Brebbia was sent down to Triple-A Sacramento.
UP NEXT: The Giants and Diamondbacks conclude their two game series on Wednesday 8/11 at 6:45pm at Oracle Park.