The unfortunate Brooks Conrad, substituting for the injured Martin Prado, has had a series to forget: four errors in three games with three of them coming in today's game. His first error--dropping a Cody Ross pop fly--let in the Giants first run in the 2nd inning. His third error--failing to stop Buster Posey's smash up the middle--let in the go-ahead and ultimately winning run in the 9th inning. A dazzling start (Game Score 80) by Jonathan Sanchez, who had a no-hitter through the first five innings, looked to be for naught when pinch-hitter Eric Hinske burned Sergio Romo with a two-run homer with one out in the 8th. The Giants spent the afternoon wasting scoring chances after scoring chances, clinging to a 1-0 lead behind the brilliant work of their southpaw starter, who only allowed two hits and one walk along with eleven strikeouts. Despite Romo's ineffectiveness on Friday, Ol' Boch gave him the ball again in a big situation and the young righty gave up a huge hit that looked to be the game-decider. With the Braves up 2-1 in the 9th, Travis Ishikawa (pinch-hitting for Romo), worked a one-out walk. The Braves were also without closer Billy Wagner, and used four pitchers in his stead. Freddy Sanchez was overmatched by Craig Kimbrel's fastballs, but he stroked a single on a slider that stayed over the middle of the plate. It was as clutch a hit as the Giants have had all year. Aubrey Huff then hit a liner to right off lefty Mike Dunn that tied the game. Posey's hard hit grounder off Peter Moylan "split the wickets" at second base and FSanchez motored home with the winner. Brian Wilson got the save despite an infield hit by Brian McCann.
Agony and ecstasy in Atlanta today. Fortunately for the Giants the Braves have some key injuries and those were the weak links. The offense was terrible from the get-go, consistently making outs when hits were needed, but managed to pull it off (with a little help) when the game was on the line. I was confident JSanchez would pitch well, and he was outstanding, I was also sure that Mike Fontenot would get a big hit, and his triple off Heyward's glove was huge.
Madison Bumgarner gets his chance tomorrow. Giants starters have been terrific--only two runs (one earned) in 23 innings. Let's get some runs for the youngster and save Tim for the Phillies, whaddya say?
p.s. Amazing, improbable, ridiculous. Tortuous. Infuriating. Dramatic. Your 2010 San Francisco Giants!