Joe Panik

Petit tosses complete game, Panik goes 5-for-5, Giants gain game on Dodgers

You don’t have to feel good for Yusmeiro Petit. You might be a fan of another team. Like the D-Backs, the team Petit pitched for from 2007-09 that came *this* close to getting perfecto’d by Petit a year ago. But if you’re an unbiased observer, or someone who leans toward the Giants’ side of the spectrum, seeing a journeyman pitcher (he pitched in Mexico between time with the D-Backs and Giants, after all) seize this opportunity is pretty awesome.

Forget Tim Lincecum for a minute. Petit is no longer his replacement, he’s a member of this rotation until proven otherwise. He threw an 84-pitch complete game tonight, and didn’t pitch to a single three-ball count. He’s the perfect foil for these D-Backs, and not because he has some grudge against his former team. Kirk Gibson’s formerly gritty, now just plain awful bunch is done caring about this season. As a result, they’re all swinging for the fences. It worked for Ender Inciarte, who splashed one into an empty McCovey Cove. The ball sank, just like Arizona’s chances throughout the rest of this game.

“You can’t predict ball” is a popular phrase and Twitter account. Here’s one: the top three hitters in the Giants’ order combined for nine hits, and Buster Posey went 0-for-4. Angel Pagan went 4-for-5 and scored three runs in the Giants’ 5-1 win, and Joe Panik went 5-for-5.

It was a neat and tidy game that lasted a minute less than two and a half hours, except there was some weirdness. Posey had two runs batted in. The first was on a bases loaded double-play grounder that wasn’t, because Didi Gregorius bounced the throw to first and Mark Trumbo couldn’t handle it. Posey was running to first at a Tim Hudson-like pace, but still “beat” the throw. He also had a sacrifice fly on a foul ball caught near the Giants bullpen.

Panik didn’t score or drive in a run, which is insane for the first rookie to collect five hits in a game since Fred Lewis in Colorado back in 2007 (thanks to the Giants for that note). But with Joe and Jennifer Montana in the stands …

Joe Montana Jennifer Montana

I mused about Panik’s big day …

And CSN Bay Area said, “We’ve shown the Montanas enough in the stands, so let’s just roll with it.”

Joe Panik Joe Cool

Extra BASGs

— The Padres beat the Dodgers 6-3 in Chavez Ravine. The Padres are still trying this year, as Andrew Cashner came back on Aug. 23 after missing over two months. He allowed two runs over seven, as Fauberto Carnandez gave up five over three. The Giants are now 2.5 games behind the Dodgers and TWO GAMES IN THE LOSS COLUMN. (I feel like people don’t emphasize this enough … and I’m totally kidding about that.)

— The Padres are playing hard for Bud Black, and the D-Backs are playing out the string for lame duck Gibson. I’m having a hard time remembering a more pathetic NL West team than these D-Backs without Paul Goldschmidt (fractured left hand).

— Besides the paychecks and the no-hitter, this isn’t Lincecum’s year. No Goldschmidt?

— Petit threw 68 strikes and 16 balls. According to the Giants, he threw 26 of 29 first-pitch strikes. He also collected his first hit of the season, the fifth of his career.

— Shoutout to Wade Miley for walking two guys in, which allowed the Giants to score five runs without an extra-base hit while going 2-for-9 with runners in scoring position.

— Panik is going to get a push for National League Rookie of the Year. Mike Krukow mentioned how all the end-of-season awards should be based on September numbers, and at this pace Panik would be the runaway winner if that were the case. But Billy Hamilton is a very good defensive outfielder with 55 stolen bases who will end the season with 150+ games played. Still, if Panik ends the season hitting anywhere close to where he’s at now (.327), he’ll finish in the top three.

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