The Giants are playing sixteen games in sixteen days, without a break. I’ve been live-blogging them here under the category/Gauntlet. This was Game 12 of the 16, the penultimate game against the Nemesis.
The attrition of illness and coronavirus the Giants have avoided all year has hit us hard during the Gauntlet of sixteen straight games. It’s all available hands on deck now which manifests tonight in a remarkable outcome: Jay Jackson (2-0, 3.24 ERA, 25 K), will get the start. I love this guy. He has had his ups and downs, but the way he stepped up on arrival and his veteran command are worth giving a nod for a start.
It won’t be easy because the Bums counter with Julio Urias (15-3, 3.17 ERA, 160 K), who has ownage in our yard and against our staff. He truly loves beating us. The feeling’s mutual. Can we tame that lineup for a second night and win the season series?
I am rockin the stylish, first pitch was 6:04pm and game time temperature was a cool, breezy 64 degrees F.
- Trea Turner (R) 2B
- Max Muncy (L) 1B
- Mookie Betts (R) RF
- Justin Turner (R) 3B
- Corey Seager (L) SS
- AJ Pollock (R) LF
- Chris Taylor (R) CF
- Will Smith (R) C
- Julio Urias (L) P
Jay Jackson and Trea Turner started the game right where we left off last night, deadlocked in struggle. Jackson threw five straight sliders, all around 85mph. On a 2-2 count, though, he hung one right over the plate, and Turner ripped it juuuust over the center field wall (400ft) for a leadoff home run. Dodgers 1, Giants 0.
Jackson continued the heavy diet of sliders, peppered with an occasional fastball, to Max Muncy, and got him swinging. He then walked Betts, who took off on the first pitch and stole second, his eighth steal of the year. sigh. Wow, Giants-Dodgers just never even gives you a minute to breathe.
But it didn’t matter, because he walked Justin Turner and he was done. One homer, One K and two walks. Sorry, Jay, we’re going to have to keep you in the middle relief, pal.
Kapler came out and turned the ball over to Jarlin Garcia, the hero of last night’s eleventh, indeed the winner of last night’s game.
Garcia came in to face Corey Seager with one down and Betts and Turner on. He got ahead 0-1 and the Dodgers immediately executed a double-steal! Wow!
Both runners advanced to scoring position as Posey’s throw to second was not in time. Garcia then fell behind 3-1. The next pitch was a well-hit sacrifice fly to the edge of the line of the sunshine in deep center field. Tough catch, well-made, but deep enough Betts scored easily – Dodgers 2, Giants 0.
Garcia quickly got ahead of AJ Pollock, 0-2. But then he threw a slow, fat, hanging slider right over the heart of the plate and Pollock ripped a double deep to center, knocking in Turner. Dodgers 3, Giants 0.
Garcia then picked off Pollock, catching him attempting to take third. Pollock got kicked in the head sliding into third and had to leave the game, first casualty of the night between the old foes. (Update: Pollock will be out two to three weeks).
- Darin Ruf (R) LF
- Kris Bryant (R) RF
- Austin Slater (R) CF
- Evan Longoria (R) 3B
- Buster Posey (R) C
- Brandon Belt (L) 1B
- Thairo Estrada (R) 2B
- Mauricio Dubon (R) SS
- Jay Jackson (R) P
Julio Urias stalked out to the mound in complete control and threw a fastball and a curve for strikes to start the bottom of the first and then got Darin Ruf to chase, striking him out on three pitches. His fourth straight strike came in to Kris Bryant at the knees. Bryant grounded the next pitch, a 92mph fastball, deep to third, and Justin Turner handled it, but wasn’t able to throw out the speedy Bryant – one out, one on, for Austin Slater.
Urias fell behind Slater 3-1, and looked angry at himself. He filled it up with a fastball. Then got him looking with the sick curve, two down. Slater never swung the bat. Urias has command.
Evan Longoria swung on the first pitch, another slow (80mph) curve, and stroked a single to right center, advancing Bryant to third. It’s so nice to have Longo back! With two out and runners in the corners, Urias threw two straight changeups to Buster Posey and then a curve for a ball. Then on the 2-1 count, Buster Posey got the changeup and managed to hit it hard inside-out to deep right, doubling in Bryant and moving Longoria to third.
With two out and runners in scoring position, Urias got Belt swinging at the changeup to end the inning. Dodgers 3, Giants 1
Garcia came back for the second and gave up a hard hit liner to Taylor on a fastball that was right over the plate, but Slater ran in, tracked it and caught it on the run at thigh-high level.
Jon pointed out that the Dodgers did not look like they were falling for whatever deception Garcia was attempting. He noted several hard hit balls. Garcia then walked Will Smith, and Urias sacrificed him over to second on a good bunt back to the mound, no play at second.
Jon again remarked that Garcia didn’t look sharp, but he got Trea Turner to hit a hard grounder to short for Dubon, who played it cleanly for the third out in the top of the second.
Urias went right back to work with the curve for a strike to Thairo Estrada, followed by the fastball Estrada fouled off, to fall behind 0-2. Urias missed with the curve low. Estrada fouled off the next pitch again and Urias missed again low, 2-2. Estrada grounded the next pitch to third, where Taylor crisply made the play and throw for the out.
Mauricio Dubon had a little better luck, falling behind 1-2, then laying off and working the count full. But Dubon popped up the next pitch to shallow center and Trea Turner back-pedaled and made a good catch. Jarlin Garcia batted for himself with two outs and nobody on, but Kapler did briefly show Tommy La Stella on deck, while Dubon was up. Garcia struck out to end the inning.
Garcia and Muncy battled. Garcia missed and Muncy took. Then Muncy ripped a ball that was barely foul for a strike, then Garcia got ahead with a fastball. Garcia missed low with the changeup. Then he struck him out swinging with the same pitch. Good pitch to get Muncy.
Mookie Betts smoked a line-drive grounder in front of Dubon that kicked up and past his glove for a base hit. Garcia and Justin Turner went at it and Jarlin fell behind 3-1. He filled the count with a changeup, called strike. Betts took off, but Turner fouled the 3-2 four-seam fastball back.
Garcia seemed bothered by Betts – if anything it contributed to the feeling he wasn’t sharp. He made a throw to first but Betts got back. Then on the next pitch, Betts took off, Garcia threw the changeup and got Turner swinging and Buster gunned down Betts at second for the Strike-em-out-Throw-em-out Double Play to end the top of the frame! Was awesome.
Top of the order against Urias, Darin Ruf, who struck out on three pitches to start the game, fell behind 1-2 on a foul ball to the upper deck. He struck out swinging against Urias’ slow, sinking curve. Urias looked frustrated as he missed the zone to Bryant, who worked the count by swinging against the off-speed pitches, but then he struck out on a check swing, trying to do just that.
Austin Slater roped a liner deep to left for a double on the first pitch he saw, the curve. But then Urias got Longoria to pop up to foul territory by first and Max Muncy tracked it and made a good, over the shoulder basket catch of the fast-descending, high pop-up, to end the inning. Dodgers defense is legit.
Jose Alvarez came in to face Corey Seager and retired him on one pitch, that he grounded meekly to first. He then got Cody Bellinger to hit a high pop up, which Estrada back-pedaled on and caught for out number two. He then got Taylor to pop up as well, and Estrada caught that one, too. Three up, three down for Alvarez on five pitches. wow.
Buster Posey led off for the Giants in the bottom of the fourth. Again, Urias couldn’t contain him as he hit the ball hard right up the middle of the defense for his second hit of the game. Brandon Belt then hit a high drive to right, but it fell shy of the wall for the long out. Thairo Estrada saw a ball and popped a foul for a strike, 1-1. Urias missed again, 2-1, but Estrada lined out to center.
Mauricio Dubon then ripped a grounder up the third base line past the diving Turner to left and advanced Posey to third with a two-out double. The patient Tommy La Stella came up to bat for the first time, and Urias fell behind 2-0, before getting La Stella to swing and miss at the 94mph four seamer right down the middle of the plate.
La Stella went on a check swing, 2-2. He fouled off another. Urias missed with the fast ball to fill the count. He was now at 62 pitches. But La Stella popped out to Seager to end the inning. The Giants stranded two RISP, again.
Having used La Stella in the pitcher’s spot, the Giants brought Zach Littell to the mound to face Will Smith, and Smith worked a full count. He fouled off a couple of pitches and then Littell bounced the ball in the dirt so far in front of the plate it kicked up over Posey to the backstop and Smith took first on the wild pitch.
Urias again dropped a perfect bunt on one pitch to advance Smith to scoring position with one out for Trea Turner and the top of the order.
Littell had a brief mound meeting with the pitching coach and came back to strike out Turner on three pitches. He then threw two more strikes to Muncy. Littell missed with the slider, but went right back to it and got Muncy to strike out swinging at the same 87mph slider. What a mound visit. Back to back strikeouts after it.
Darin Ruf, whom Urias had struck out twice in this game, worked a full count and fouled off Urias’ 70th pitch on an emergency swing of a 3-2 curve, but he struck out for the third straight time on a high, hard 97mph fastball that might have been outside the zone. Hat trick of K’s, Ruf’s staring at the sombrero.
Urias and Kris Bryant went at it again and Bryant was able to smash a hard hit one-hopper to third that, finally, Turner couldn’t turn. Justin Turner had been vaccuming up balls hit in his direction, twisting in the dirt and gunning down Giants for inning after inning. It skipped off his glove into left for a single for Bryant.
Austin Slater hit a slow dribbler to second and was thrown out, just barely, but advanced Bryant to scoring position. Longo hit an easy grounder to short and that was the end of the inning – another RISP stranded.
Mookie Betts swung at the first pitch from Littell and flied out to deep left center. Littel then got Justin Turner to hit a grounder to the hole. Dubon got it, but he blew the throw to first. Belt had no chance and the ball flew out of play, advancing Turner to second on the ground rule. Ruled a single and an error. That was it for Littell. The Giants turned the ball over to Jose Quintana to face Corey Seager.
Quintana struggled to find the zone and fell behind 2-0, but then he got a strike on a ball in the dirt that got away and allowed Turner to advance to third. Quintana was then charged with a balk that brought him home. Dodgers 4, Giants 1.
Replays showed it to be a questionable call made by a hopped -up ump who was behind him. Quintana clearly set before the wind-up and the guy didn’t see it and went ballistic. Kapler argued, though you are not allowed to argue balks. lame.
Quintana got Seager to ground out to Belt and covered for out number two. He struck out Bellinger swinging on a great curve. Terribly unfair he was charged with that run.
Buster came up in the bottom of the sixth and roped his third hit of the game, a single, this time off of an Urias fastball. Buster had hits off the curve, the changeup and the fastball tonight. wow. Brandon Belt then worked a full count, but struck out on a 95mph Urias fastball, his eighth K of the night.
Thairo Estrada fell behind 1-2, but then hit a hard liner down the left field line that went foul. He advanced Posey to second on a little comebacker that died in front of the plate, and was scooped by the catcher, Smith, who threw out Estrada. With two out and Posey on second Dodgers manager Dave Roberts took the ball from Urias.
The Dodgers brought on Alex Vesia to face Mauricio Dubon with two out and Posey in scoring position. Dubon fell behind 0-2, then looked at a changeup low. He swung at a very high fastball and struck out to end the sixth.
The Giants brought on John Brebbia for the seventh. Oh no! I really don’t think Brebbia is good enough to face the Dodgers. But he faced Chris Taylor first, and struck him out looking at three pitches. Brebbia gave up a single to Will Smith on a hanging slider, but then struck out pinch-hitting Billy McKinney on four pitches and got Trae Turner to fly out to center on one. Well done, John Brebbia!
The Giants came up against Phil Bickford and Kap brought in LaMonte Wade, Jr. to hit for Brebbia. Bickford hit him and put Wade on to lead off the seventh. Ruf lined out to right. Bryant flied out to center and the chess continued. The Dodgers pulled Bickford after three batters and brought in the frustratingly good Blake Treinen with Mike Yastrzemski coming to the plate.
Yaz fell behind 0-2 quickly but took high and outside for a ball when The Man, Wade, stole second without a throw. His sixth steal in as many attempts. Love that guy. Sadly, Yaz struck out looking stranding him, again. The Giants were 1 for 8 with RISP at that point.
The Giants brought out Caleb Barager for the eighth, hmmm. He got Muncy to fly out on one pitch, then got ahead of Mookie Betts and got him to ground out to Longoria who gunned him down. Barager was working fast. He looked good. Then Justin Turner hit a tall fly to the deep part of the yard in right … but Wade, The Man, tracked it down and made the catch for the final out. Way to go Caleb! That was a three-up, three-down, nine pitch inning for Barager.
Blake Treinen was back for the bottom of the eighth and he struck out Longoria. Buster Posey, who was three for three, hit another hard ball to right, but Mookie Betts made a brilliant catch for the out. Brandon Belt faced Treinen and grounded out to first, weakly. The Giants went quietly in the eighth.
The Giants gave the rookie Sammy Long the ball in the ninth. What? I thought Barager was great – and he only threw nine pitches.
Sammy Long gave up a leadoff homer to Corey Seager to dead center. He then walked Bellinger. and fell behind Chris Taylor 3-0. sigh. Taylor hit a grounder to third and it went off the glove of Longo, an error. Two on, nobody out and a run in, 5-1 Dodgers. ugh.
Smith grounded to short, and the Giants got the force at second, but not the double play. Albert Pujols then hit a pinch-hit sacrifice to deep right and scored Bellinger.
Long, who was supposed to get the first two lefties, failed completely to possess the inning. But Kap didn’t want to use anyone else, so … what a dumb situation. Long had a two-strike count to Trae Turner and hit him to put him on. Facepalm.
With two out, runners at first and second, and a full count to Muncy, Sammy Long gave up a high foul ball that Ruf couldn’t get to. Max fought off three more. Long walked him to load the bases. sigh. He got Betts to fly out to right to end the nightmare.
The Dodgers brought on Brusdar Graterol to finish off the Giants. The hard-throwing righty who touches 100mph and above, retired Dubon and Estrada. LaMonte Wade, Jr, crushed one to center that bounced over the wall for a ground rule double. Ruf grounded out to second to end the game.
Dodgers 6, Giants 1
The Giants and Dodgers are tied for the lead in the NL West (86-50), going into the rubber game of the series tomorrow. The season series is tied 9 – 9.
It’s for all the marbles tomorrow, and the Dodgers have their Cy Young candidate, Walker Buehler, on the mound. The Giants, by contrast, will be cobbling together a staff for a “bullpen game.”
It’s Moneyball vs. the Sith Lord that outspends us – by 60 million dolllars! – for the 28 guys on the field. ⤵️
2021 NL West Standings
Let’s Go Giants!!!
Beat LA! Beat LA! Beat LA