|By Jeremy Harness
August 7, 2013
Starter Madison Bumgarner had been giving a spectacular performance, going seven innings and giving up only a pair of hits and a walk while the Giants had just given him a run in the bottom of the seventh to put him in line for a possible win.
That’s when the good feelings ceased, however. The Milwaukee Brewers tagged Bumgarner for four runs in the eighth inning as the Giants fell 6-1 before 41,416 hopeful fans at AT&T Park Wednesday night.
Looking on the bright side, however, Bumgarner now has 10 straight outings that he has pitched at least seven innings, which is the longest streak by a Giants starter since Rick Reuschel had 11 consecutive to end the 1988 season.
The Giants couldn’t get anything going offensively against starter Marco Estrada, managing only one hit against him in the five innings he pitched.
It wasn’t just Estrada who the Giants had issues with on Wednesday. They also have center fielder Carlos Gomez to thank for keeping them off the scoreboard. They hit several hard shots in Gomez’s area, only to watch him run each one of them down.
That started in the first inning, when Buster Posey smacked one that was destined for extra bases, a ball which Gomez leaped at the warning track and snared to end the inning.
The Giants did get a little payback in the seventh inning, though. After he walked with two outs, Bumgarner timed his pickoff move perfectly as Gomez was trying to steal second. From there, first baseman Brandon Belt fired to second for the putout as Gomez spiked his helmet in frustration.
That seemed to spark a rally for the Giants that carried over to the bottom of the inning, as the two Brandons got on base to start things off, Crawford with a walk and Belt with a single that just skipped past second baseman Rickie Weeks’ glove.
A wild pitch by reliever Alfredo Figaro then moved both of them into scoring position with Posey at the plate. Posey was robbed again of a base hit – this time by a diving grab in left field by Khris Davis – but Crawford tagged up from third to put the Giants in front and take the lid off of the scoreless game.
However, the Brewers themselves got some momentum against Bumgarner in the eighth that eventually knocked him out of the game. Davis and Yuniesky Betancourt led off the inning with hits before Jeff Bianchi scored Davis. On the next play, Betancourt scored on a throwing error by Bumgarner on a fielder;’s choice, which gave the Brewers the lead. After the outburst in the eighth, the Brewers put up two more runs off reliever Barry Zito to send even more fans to the exits.
by Kahlil Najar
SAN FRANCISCO, CA. — On a day billed as a Grateful Dead Tribute Night that saw Bob Weir throw out the first pitch and plenty of tie dyed shirts throughout AT&T Park, the magic was certainly in the air as a plethora of mistakes by the Brewers (47-65) were able to propel the Giants (50-61) to a 4-2 win and give them their first win of this important seven-game homestand.
The Giants started the scoring off in the bottom of the fourth when Gregor Blanco came to the plate and hit a hard grounder to first base that Juan Francisco was able to field but threw the ball into the dirt past an outstretched Scooter Gennett and went into left field. Brandon Belt who was already on second was running on contact and was able to score safely on the Francisco’s fifth error of the year to give the Giant’s a 1-0 lead. In the seventh inning, the Brew Crew were able to tie the game when Francisco hit a deep ball to center field that popped over the fence for a ground rule double and scored Jonathan Lucroy who had started off the inning with his 18th double of the year.
The bottom of the eight proved to be the most mind-bending inning for the Brewers as after a lead off walk and a stolen base to Hunter Pence landed him at second base, the usually reliable John Axford threw a wild pitch on an intentional walk to Pablo Sandoval that moved Pence over to third and Sandoval at first with one out. The pitching miscue landed Axford in the doghouse and the Brewers brought in reliever Michael Gonzalez to face red hot Brandon Belt who had three singles on the day. After bringing Belt to a full count, Gonzalez threw a slider in the dirt that loaded the bases.
The next batter Jeff Francouer, who was pinch-hitting for Roger Kieschnick smacked a broken bat single off of new Brewer reliever Rob Wooten to left field just over the reach of Jean Segura and allowed Hunter Pence to score from third and give the Giants a 2-1 lead. After a routine pop out by Gregor Blanco, Giants manager Bruce Bochy again decided to bring in a pinch hitter and this time he brought in right-handed batter Joaquin Arias who after three straight sliders hit a ground ball to third that slipped under the glove of Jeff Bianchi and allowed Pablo Sandoval and Brandon Belt to score to give the Giant’s a three run lead with a score of 4-1. Sergio Romo came in the close the game in the top of the ninth and gave up an home run to Juan Francisco but settle down and earned his 27th save of the year.
Giants pitcher Chad Gaudin (5-2) had an impressive game as he lasted for six and one-third innings and only gave up four hits and one run and notched an impressive eight strike outs and continued his streak of only allowing two runs or fewer in eight of his last ten starts. “He’s just been so consistent, both in the ‘pen and starting,” Bochy said. “He’s so valuable on this ballclub. We needed a starter and he’s stepped in and he’s thrown the ball as well as anybody.”
Hunter Pence did his best impersonation of the Grateful Dead Bears as he walked a team high three times and continued his streak of reaching base safely every game since the All-Star game. Brandon Belt also had himself a game today as he notched his second three-hit, two-runs performance of August.
The Giants and the Brewers head back at it tomorrow when Matt Cain (7-6, 4.57 ERA) squares up against Wily Peralta (7-11, 4.57 ERA), game time 7:15pm.