“My timing was good…,” said Hunter Pence. And that is the understatement of the year.
The Giants ended a seven game losing streak by shutting out the Mets tonight at AT&T Park, evening the series at a game a piece.
The G-men are 13-6 when Hunter Pence starts and 30-36 when he doesn’t. Enough said.
“Just good to see him (Hunter Pence) out there. He gives you a shot of adrenaline,” said Manager Bruce Bochy. Pence returned to the Giants’ starting line-up and knocked in two runs with a single and fielders choice, and also contributed defensively, making a sliding catch in the sixth inning, popping up and firing home to throw out Curtis Granderson for a double play to preserve a 3-0 lead.
The other big story of the night was Matt Cain – the Matt Cain we’ve all come to know and love over the years. Cain bounced back from his first start of the season (where he allowed five runs in five innings last week in a loss to the Miami Marlins), by throwing six innings, allowing no runs on just two hits, while walking two and striking out seven. And Santiago Casilla pitched an uneventful ninth to earn his 21st save, after struggling with his confidence over the past couple of weeks.
“From this point on, it’s going to be important that we pitch well. Not just our starters, but our bullpen as well,” said Boch.
Gregor Blanco went 3 for 4, scoring a run, while raising his batting average to .314 for the season. He was a catalyst tonight and Boch indicated that he’d continue to bat leadoff until Nori Aoki returns from the DL and takes his customary position in left field and at the top of the order.
Joe Panik went 2 for 4 scoring two runs, and although Brandon Crawford was hitless, he produced his 50th RBI of the season with a sacrifice fly. In all, the G-men tallied ten base hits, with no extra base hits, going 2 for 9 with runners in scoring position.
Tomorrow afternoon, the Giants look to extend their win streak to two games and take the series, with Jake Peavy (0-3, 6.43) taking the mound against Mets All-Star Jacob deGrom (8-6, 2.30). Peavy pitched well last week in his first start back since missing over two months due to lower back and hip issues, allowing just two runs in 6 1/3 innings in a 2-1 loss to the Nationals.
- Andrew Susac got the start behind the plate while Buster Posey took the night off with a day game tomorrow, following this night game
- The Dodgers lost to the Phillies 7-2 and the G-men now trail L.A. by four games in the NL West
- The Mets managed just four hits off of Giants pitching, and have the worst batting average in MLB at .233