3-1 win in Cincy
Kelby Tomlinson, pressed in to service for the ailing Joe Panik, delivered two infield hits, one of them driving in the go-ahead run in the 8th, and played flawlessly in the field behind Jeff Samardzija. Gregor Blanco, filling in for the ailing Angel Pagan, had a clutch RBI hit right after Tomlinson to give the Giants a two-run edge. That was enough. The team had ten hits total, and five walks, but was 3-for-15 with runners in scoring position. The game was closer than it ought to have been. Lefty John Lamb kept throwing his goofy slowballs and they seemed to work as the Giants could not capitalize on their many opportunities. The first run scored in the 1st and was a Buster Posey-Hunter Pence double duet. Buster would hit two more two-baggers; looks like he's finding his stroke. Baserunning blunders from Denard Span and Brandon Belt derailed rallies as well, and when former Giants prospect Adam Duvall hit a solo shot in the 5th it was a nail-biter all the way.
But the night belonged to starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija who was up to the challenge and mowed down the Reds over eight strong. He's an up-and-down character: his Game Scores for his six starts are 43, 65, 48, 68, 44, and 79. But tonight he was in command the whole way using his big heat to pop 96 mph on the gun and a gnarly 92-93 cutter that bedeviled lefties and righties alike. He even got some sinkerball action going and the Reds made 11 ground ball outs. The Giants flashed their usual stellar leather, but even so Samardzija was getting a lot of weak contact. His final line was 3 hits, 2 walks, with 9 strikeouts (115 pitches, 29 TBF). Home plate umpire Chad Fairchild liked what he saw from The Shark as there were 26 called strikes. Santiago Casilla finished up for the third straight game.
Tomorrow morning (9:35 Pacific) is the getaway game and then Giants will come home to face the Rockies for four starting on Thursday. Jake Peavy takes the hill in Cincy--let's hope he can pitch a little better than last time.