The last time the Giants hit a home run was May 1st, Tuesday night against Miami. Pablo Sandoval did the honors, and it was the only run the team could manage for Matt Cain who was tagged with a loss despite a solid eight innings and a Game Score of 65. The Giants could have used a late dinger today, but that's not how this Panda-less lineup rolls. They did get some runs on the board for Matty, but Santiago Casilla could not close it out in the 9th despite two outs and two strikes. Angel Pagan, still looking shaky in center, was two feet too late to squeeze the last out and the fly ball hit by former Giant and pinch-hitter supreme Travis Ishikawa wound up tying the game instead of ending it. It was a deflating moment. Cain was once again denied a win even though he struck out ten guys in his seven innings of work (Game Score 66). It was a win, though, and it really doesn't matter who the "W" is assigned to, as long as it gets added to the team total. The whole concept of an insurance run or, like I said earlier, a late-game jack, is off the table with this bunch. They score runs like insurance companies pay claims--with great reluctance. One-run games may suit the purist, but there's just too little wiggle room for my taste. Every event is magnified (like Conor Gillaspie's failure to field Corey Hart's smash and the aforementioned poor route by Pagan) and the outcome can turn in an instant. You've got to have a little padding, you can't expect the pitchers to do all the work and put up zeroes every time. Giants have scored 108 runs in 28 games (3.86) and allowed 105 (3.75). That's how you play .500 ball, my friends. Kudos nonetheless to Hector Sanchez for the clutch hit in the 11th and to Buster Posey for leading things off with his only hit of the day. Team 3-10 RISP, things just might be looking up.
Now the club gets to go to LA where the hottest team in the league has won ten of twelve. This would be a good time in this young season for the lads to step up and play great ball. An emotional win at home ought to give them a little mo' against the Dodgers who blew a save in the 9th in Chicago today with a 3-2 lead and are going to extras. Go, Cubs! Finish them off!
p.s. 4-3 Cubs in 11; LA 18-10, SF 14-14
p.p.s. Rory Paap at Bay City Ball does some research focusing on Matt Cain getting Cain'd. Check it out.