By: Malaika Bobino
San Francisco, CA – It’s one of the biggest rivalries in Major League baseball. These two teams meet again to determine their fate in the National League West.
The Giants pulled further away with 5-2 victory and extended their lead to a season-high 5.5 games over over the Dodgers in the NL West. San Francisco hasn’t been ahead in the division by this many games since the conclusion of the 2003 regular season.
“Getting there [postseason] is what the goal is, and if we don’t win the division, we need to find a way,” said Shane Victorino.
The Dodgers took an early lead in the third frame when Matt Kemp grounded out to third baseman Pablo Sandoval who could’ve worked a double play but mishandled the ball.
He threw to first for the out but Mark Ellis scored at home. They scored their final run when Adam Kennedy blasted a solo home run in the sixth. The offense from that point had nothing left and was shut down by the Giants bullpen.
Tim Lincecum had one of better nights on the mound, leaving the Dodgers baffled. Victorino, Kemp, Hanley Ramirez, Adrian Gonzalez and Andre Either all combined 0-for-20. Matt recorded the only RBI on a ground out. Despite giving up a career-high seven walks, Lincecum left no room error.
“We just need to keep going, that’s all I can say” Tim said. “I don’t think anybody in this room is saying that’s enough room (being 5.5 games ahead in the division) right now with the time we’ve got left. We need to keep pushing.”
Angel Pagan tied the game 1-1 with a RBI single to right field, bottom of the third. With two runners on the Giants had an opportunity to extend their lead but Sandoval lined out to short stop Hanley Ramirez to end the inning.
The next six batters Josh Beckett faced, he did not allow on base. For the next two innings San Francisco was stifled by the Dodgers defense and superb pitching from Beckett. But that didn’t last long, the Giants tied the game again 2-2 on infield single by Hunter Pence in the sixth.
“It started with Timmy, a great job he did,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “The other guy did well, it was a well played game. It was good to see us pitch like this, to go so deep in the game and have guys picking up Timmy.”
After giving up his seventh walk, Lincecum night ended top of the seventh frame. He reached a career-high in walks surpassing the six he issued twice in his career. Tim finished with 6 1/3 innings, four hits, two runs (all earned), seven walks, seven strike outs and one home run. Despite the walks, he had a pretty good outing.
San Francisco’s offense soared behind Marco Scutaro’s two-run single in the seventh. Josh struggled on the mound loading the bases before Scutaro came to bat. Joaquin Arias hit a single up the middle and scored in Brandon Belt to secure their win in the eighth.
“I really didn’t make good contact, but I sometimes I guess it’s better to be lucky than good,” said Marco.