Skip to content

Backs against the wall, Giants and A’s come through

Oct 10, 2012, 1:47 AM EDT

Grant Balfour Reuters

With four teams combining on just 16 hits and five runs, Tuesday’s games were all about the pitching. Facing elimination, the Giants and A’s survived thanks to the strength of their rotations and bullpens.

Tied 1-1 for most of the day, the Giants tried emptying their bench as a means to score a run in the eighth after the Reds brought in lefty Sean Marshall. They sent up three straight pinch-hitters, none of whom reached base in the inning. The strategy may have proved very costly in time, particularly with Hunter Pence nursing a leg problem that left him hobbled after he reached base in the 10th. The Giants still had catcher Hector Sanchez available, and they could have put Buster Posey at first base and Brandon Belt in the outfield had the need arisen. But if they had made that move, the bench would have been completely exhausted for the rest of the game.

Fortunately, the Giants were able to win the game in the 10th, after a bad-hop grounder led to a Scott Rolen error and an unearned run against Jonathan Broxton. Sergio Romo, who got his first at-bat since 2010 in the top of the 10th, closed out the game.

After Ryan Vogelsong‘s shaky first inning, Giants pitchers allowed a total of one-hit to the Reds in the 2-1 victory. Still, one wonders just how differently the game might have gone had Brandon Phillips not gotten thrown out trying to take third in the top of the first. The Reds ended up with three hits and a walk in the inning, yet scored just one run.

That first inning was the only time the Giants were in trouble today. One could say A’s pitchers weren’t even in trouble the once. The Tigers were able to put two men on just once, doing so with one out in the top of the second. Too bad for them that the wrong part of the Detroit lineup was up in that situation. Andy Dirks and Avisail Garcia both grounded out to strand the runners.

Thanks to a couple of sterling plays by A’s outfielders, both on balls hit by Prince Fielder, the Tigers never had an extra-base hit in their 2-0 loss in Oakland. The A’s bullpen, which was so disappointing in the Game 2 loss, rebounded to pitch three scoreless innings, with just two hits and no walks allowed. Sean Doolittle fanned all three batters he faced in the eighth. Grant Balfour gave up a single to Miguel Cabrera in the ninth, only to induce a double play from Fielder afterwards.

And thus the Bay Area teams will live to play another day. By virtue of being at home for the remainder of the series, one imagines the A’s will have a better chance than the Giants of advancing. Of course, they’ll have to keep pitching well, as the offense could be stymied by Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander. The Giants haven’t inspired a lot of faith, not with their offense scoring a total of five runs in three games. It’s a good bet that the Reds will put up some runs at least one of these next two games, and the Giants might be hard-pressed to match them.

Latest Posts
  1. David Price scratched from start due to illness

    Jul 12, 2014, 10:53 AM EDT

    David Price AP AP

    Jake Odorizzi will move up in the rotation to start this afternoon. The hope is that Price will feel well enough to pitch tomorrow.

  2. Aroldis Chapman sets MLB record with strikeout in 40th straight relief appearance

    Jul 12, 2014, 10:22 AM EDT

    Aroldis Chapman Getty Getty Images

    The previous record was held by Hall of Famer Bruce Sutter, who went 39 consecutive appearances with a strikeout in 1977.

  3. Jordan Zimmermann exits start with right biceps cramp; will go for MRI

    Jul 12, 2014, 9:38 AM EDT

    Jordan Zimmermann AP AP

    At the very least, Jordan Zimmermann will not be able to pitch in the All-Star Game next week. His availability beyond that is up in the air.

  4. Settling the Score: Friday’s results

    Jul 12, 2014, 8:56 AM EDT

    Francisco Rodriguez AP AP

    A quick recap of a busy Friday around MLB, including another loss for the Brewers.

  5. Ian Kinsler replaces teammate Victor Martinez on the AL All-Star Roster

    Jul 11, 2014, 11:05 PM EDT

    Ian Kinsler Ian Kinsler

    The AL Roster swaps one injured Tiger for a healthy one. Ian Kinsler will replace Victor Martinez.

  6. Pirates don’t plan to activate Gerrit Cole from the DL when eligible

    Jul 11, 2014, 10:35 PM EDT

    Gerrit Cole Gerrit Cole

    Pirates manager Clint Hurdle doesn’t expect Gerrit Cole to return to the club shortly after the All-Star break.

  7. Miguel Montero to replace Yadier Molina on the NL All-Star roster

    Jul 11, 2014, 9:50 PM EDT

    Miguel Montero Miguel Montero

    Brewers catcher Jonathan Lucroy will start for the NL All-Stars after all. Miguel Montero makes the roster, taking the place of the injured Yadier Molina.

  8. Giants activate Marco Scutaro from DL, designate Brandon Hicks for assignment

    Jul 11, 2014, 9:09 PM EDT

    Marco Scutaro Marco Scutaro

    Marco Scutaro could make his 2014 debut on Friday night off of the bench. He will be inserted into the starting lineup on Saturday.

  9. Diamondbacks activate Mark Trumbo from the 15-day disabled list

    Jul 11, 2014, 8:45 PM EDT

    Mark Trumbo Mark Trumbo

    Mark Trumbo has returned to the Diamondbacks a little sooner than anticipated.

  10. Mariners call up Justin Smoak, place Michael Saunders on the disabled list

    Jul 11, 2014, 7:50 PM EDT

    Justin Smoak Justin Smoak

    Michael Saunders is out with a strained oblique, and Justin Smoak is back in the major leagues after a stint at Triple-A.

  11. Rockies activate Carlos Gonzalez from the 15-day disabled list

    Jul 11, 2014, 6:55 PM EDT

    Milwaukee Brewers v Colorado Rockies Getty Images

    More than a month after going on the disabled list with a left finger injury, Carlos Gonzalez returns to the Rockies lineup for Friday’s game against the Twins.

  12. The Mets’ Single-A affiliate is trading season tickets for LeBron James Heat jerseys

    Jul 11, 2014, 6:05 PM EDT

    Los Angeles Lakers v Miami Heat Getty Images

    The Mets’ Single-A affiliate, located in St. Lucie, Florida, knows just what to do with the LeBron James jerseys Heat fans no longer want.

  13. Jerry Sands needs season-ending wrist surgery

    Jul 11, 2014, 5:17 PM EDT

    Jerry Sands Rays Getty Images

    Jerry Sands was in line for expanded playing time for the Rays when he went down with a wrist injury three weeks ago and today the team announced that he’ll require season-ending surgery.

  14. Rangers sign Jerome Williams

    Jul 11, 2014, 4:52 PM EDT

    Jerome Williams Getty Getty Images

    Released earlier this week by the Astros, right-hander Jerome Williams has agreed to a minor-league contract with the Rangers.

  15. Ubaldo Jimenez hurt his ankle stepping in a hole, so the Orioles are calling up Kevin Gausman

    Jul 11, 2014, 4:46 PM EDT

    Kevin Gausman Kevin Gausman

    “He stepped in a hole in the parking lot” is a new one, as far as weird injuries go.

  16. Masahiro Tanaka apologizes for being hurt

    Jul 11, 2014, 4:30 PM EDT

    Masahiro Tanaka Getty Images

    Not something you see players do every day.

  17. Joe Kelly rejoins the Cardinals for his first start since April

    Jul 11, 2014, 4:16 PM EDT

    Joe Kelly Getty Getty Images

    Joe Kelly is back off the disabled list and ready to rejoin the Cardinals’ rotation tonight against the Brewers after missing the past two-plus months with a hamstring injury that was supposed to involve a much speedier recovery.

  18. Grady Sizemore is playing center field and leading off in his Phillies debut

    Jul 11, 2014, 3:45 PM EDT

    Grady Sizemore Getty Getty Images

    Philadelphia’s usual center fielder and leadoff man, Ben Revere, is out of the starting lineup for the second straight game because of an ankle injury.

  19. Rangers catcher Geovany Soto arrested for marijuana possession

    Jul 11, 2014, 3:26 PM EDT

    Geovany Soto

    Too bad he didn’t sign with Seattle or Colorado.

Featured video

Yanks, Cards and Reds hit with injury bug
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. C. Gonzalez (2645)
  2. J. Votto (2589)
  3. E. Encarnacion (2439)
  4. M. Tanaka (2435)
  5. M. Trumbo (2373)
  1. J. Nelson (2363)
  2. R. Braun (2298)
  3. J. Samardzija (2263)
  4. B. Hamilton (2171)
  5. V. Martinez (2128)