Athletics beat the Dodgers, get 1st win
Second baseman’s sacrifice fly in the 10th lifts SF past powerful Padres
Donovan Solano, known to Giants teammates as “Donnie Barrels,” has an innate ability to find the sweet spot of the bat and pepper the diamond with base hits.
So on a day when Solano went 0-for-4 with three strikeouts, no one expected him to be the team’s offensive savior. It’s a sign of how well the Giants are pitching and how poorly they’re hitting that Solano was able to earn that label anyway.
In top of the 10th inning at Petco Park, Solano didn’t find the barrel, but he did deliver the game-winning swing as his 294-foot flyball was barely deep enough to bring home Alex Dickerson for a go-ahead sacrifice fly.
Dickerson, who began the 10th inning on second base, advanced to third base on an Austin Slater flyball for the first out before holding on a Mike Yastrzemski infield single. When Solano’s flyball reached Wil Myers’ glove in right, the Giants’ left fielder raced to the plate and narrowly beat an
on-target throw from the outfield.
After right-hander Tyler Rogers surrendered a gametying home run to the Padres’ Myers in the bottom of the eighth, Giants lefthanders Jake McGee and Wandy Peralta pitched perfect ninth and 10th innings to cap off a 3-2 win and secure a hard-earned series victory.
With a pitching matchup featuring Kevin Gausman and Blake Snell, the Giants and Padres entered Wednesday’s rubber match at Petco Park expecting runs to come at a premium. The way the Giants have swung the bat this week, it’s almost stunning they were able to take two of three from a loaded San Diego squad.
Rogers’ eighth-inning miscue came following a brilliant outing from Gausman, who was “Cain’d” for the second straight start to open the year. Despite pitching well and handing the ball to his bullpen with a lead, Gausman didn’t receive much offensive support and didn’t earn a win for his efforts, which happened to Matt Cain throughout the best seasons of his Giants career.
When the Giants extended a one-year, $18.9 million qualifying offer to Gausman at the beginning of the offseason, they did so with the belief the right-hander had ace-like potential. So far this season, he’s lived up to those expectations.
Gausman never recorded more than 19 outs in a start with San Francisco last season, but he got 20 against the Mariners on Opening Night in Seattle before completing a full 7.0 innings (21 outs) on Wednesday against the Padres. Giants manager Gabe Kapler had Gausman bat for himself to lead off the top of the seventh and while he looked lost at the plate as a hitter, he made sure San Diego’s lineup didn’t have a comfortable afternoon either.
The Padres recorded four hits and walked just once against the Giants righthander, who racked up five strikeouts and set the franchise record for the most strikeouts by a pitcher in his first 12 starts.