A loss to start the San Francisco Giants’ homestand wouldn’t have been all that surprising, given the circumstances. The Colorado Rockies trotted out a nearly anonymous lineup that was ripe for the overlooking, the Giants were coming off one of their worst games in quite a while a day earlier in Arizona, and Madison Bumgarner started the leadoff hitters with walks in each of the first three innings.
Bumgarner walked five on Monday night, a career high for a pitcher with historic command — especially for his age. Still, the Giants outlasted the Rockies on a brisk evening full of pitching changes, “M-V-P” chants and Brandon Crawford highlights.
The chants were for Buster Posey, who made the game’s first great defensive play when he threw out Dexter Fowler at second base. Guys keep running on Posey, and he’s thrown out six straight would-be basestealers. It’s almost like the rest of the league is trying to boost Posey’s MVP resume for him, even though he keeps collecting multihit games. With two singles on Monday, that’s nine times in September that Posey has had two or more hits in a game. Since Monday was Sept. 17, that’s almost a majority of the time this month, I reckon. Arithmetic.
Yet Posey didn’t quite dazzle the audience quite like Crawford, who came close to hitting a home run twice (really close the first time) and made a fantastic play ranging deep in the hole to his backhand side to throw out Jordan Pacheco. It was good enough to be named play of the year for many shortstops, although Crawford has made great plays like that one almost every other day he’s been in the lineup.
Still, the play was good enough that Crawford was asked about it.
“That’s a play that we practice during BP every once in a while, kind of messing around sometimes because that’s a tough play to make. Credit Wotus I guess, for hitting me those balls in the hole.”
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— “Mechanics were probably as bad as they’ve been all year,” Bumgarner said. “When you’re out there you can’t be thinking of mechanics and stuff. When you’re feeling that off you got to just battle and make pitches and let hand-eye coordination take over.”
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— The Giants’ magic number is eight now, which also happens to match their lead over the Dodgers. If the Giants finish 5-10 over their last 15 games, the Dodgers would have to go 13-2 over the last 15 games to force a tie.
— Pablo Sandoval had an eventful night in a good way, with a diving/falling play to his left on defense, 1-for-3 with a walk and a run scored on offense, and one of the ugliest slides/rolls into home I’ve ever seen. If you shook out Sandoval’s jersey after taking out the batter’s box, you’d probably come up with about five pounds of dirt and chalk.
— I asked Bruce Bochy about Xavier Nady, who came back from a hamstring injury on Monday night and was removed late in the game for defensive purposes.
“As far as the hamstring I think he’s doing well,” Bochy said. “He’ll be out there tomorrow unless he’s feeling soreness.”
— Nady’s new walkup song is “X” by Xzibit, for obvious reasons.
— Just another 2-hit day for Marco Scutaro. It’s hard to keep thinking of things to say about a guy who’s so consistent. So, um, keep it up!
— We got another Santiago Casilla at-bat, and the results weren’t as funny or productive as on Friday night. Maybe it’s best to keep from sending Jairo up there more than once per week.
— Brian Wilson was in the dugout during the game in the clubhouse talking to Sergio Romo when the media entered. He didn’t talk to any of us, but he was wearing a pretty nice pair of old Reebok Pumps.
— There was an adult male streaker at AT&T Park, but not in the field. For the unlucky fans sitting in the lower level about 30 rows behind the Rockies’ dugout, Monday night served as an anatomy lesson of sorts that they won’t soon forget … no matter how hard they try.
— My wife and sister attended the game, and while they didn’t get a picture of the streaker they did catch this shot of a reclining Joe Montana.