The Mets and the Giants are similar teams that are evenly matched. Both have good pitching, excellent defense and, when healthy, potent offense. It was a shame this first match-up was played under constraints of injury and fatigue, but that’s the dog-days of August.
The Mets tumbled into our yard without Jacob deGrom, Francisco Lindor or Lindor’s expensive new replacement Javier Báez. The San Francisco Giants are winning the war of attrition that is the long baseball season.
This one felt unfair. The Mets were coming off a brutal 14-4 loss at home to the Bums, in which position players had to pitch. They then got on a plane and flew across the country on a redeye flight, arriving in their hotel rooms at 5am on gameday. Yet they showed up at Oracle and fought the Giants hard.
Ol’ Rich Hill led the way – love that vet. But Kris Bryant smashed two home runs to support Kevin Gausman and lead the G-men back to victory. It was Gasman’s career-high 12th win of the season and first win against the Mets in four career starts. Still, he was not really crisp, and allowed five hits and three runs. Giants 7, Mets 5
Well-rested, this one was a battle of pitching stars as Logan Webb and Marcus Stroman went toe-to-toe. I told E the Blazer to take the under (8). Logan Webb seems like he is not only in the zone, but honing details there. AP wrote: “Logan Webb has been so dominant for three months now that he allows himself to be bothered by even one big hit.” This was a great game for Webb.
Tonight we also used LaMonte Wade, Jr. and Tommy La Stella in the leadoff and two-slot for the first time. I LOVE this move, which fruited in the very first inning as Silk launched a two-run homer, knocking in The Man. Longo homered! – which was the difference as the Giants struggled against Stroman, who struck out nine and walked two over seven solid innings. He only gave up three runs and five hits and the Mets defense was very good, sharp, hustling.
The difference-maker, Longoria’s 10th home run, also meant nine players have double-digit homers this year, matching the San Francisco record in 2000, 1987 and 1958. If Austin Slater hits another dinger it will be the first time the Giants have ever had ten guys hit ten or more in a season. Giants 3, Mets 2
Excoriated on Twitter by their owner for not producing more runs, the Mets were motivated to prevent a sweep. But it was a battle to do so and both teams fought hard. Six Giants pitchers combined to blank the Mets until the ninth inning. But in the end, the implosion of the newly-returned Tyler Chatwood cost the Giants the game – yet another extra innings loss for Gabe Kapler.
“Called up yesterday and thrust into a tense, pressure-filled game-deciding situation!” – has been the modus operandi of Gabe Kapler and these Giants. They did it to Kazmir and Jackson and Doval and Sammy Long and now to Tyler Chatwood. It freaked me out at first, but now I like it. No kid-gloves for relievers. We need you to perform, this is the bigs. But the downside to this approach is painfully obvious: Chatwood got tagged for a three-run homer in the tenth by former Giant and fan-favorite Kevin Pillar. Giants 2, Mets 6 in 12 innings