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San Francisco Giants

Giants Force Game 4 In Walk-Off Win

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San Francisco, CA – It was like “deja vu” all over again. The Giants faced another elimination game and their ace took the mound.

 

But this time Madison Bumgarner didn’t pitch a shutout nor did he go the distance. Bumgarner gave up a three-run homer to Jake Arrieta, Conor Gillaspie made a clutch play and Joe Panik hit the walk-off double to keep San Francisco alive in the series.

 

 

The Giants 6-5 win over the Chicago Cubs gives them a chance to tie the series tomorrow at AT&T Park. San Francisco scored three runs in the eighth to avoid being eliminated. The Giants had not scored off Chicago’s bullpen all year and they ended that streak tonight. Reliever Aroldis Chapman got one out allowed three runs and threw 21 pitches.

 

“What they did tonight, that’s one of the best, most exciting games I’ve ever been involved in,” said manager Bruce Bochy. “They found a way. They had to score off one of the best close serves in the game. And Conor, a huge hit.”

 

Bottom of the thirteenth inning, Brandon Crawford led off with a double. Panik followed with a sharp line drive to right filed and the celebration began. San Francisco has now won each of their last ten elimination games, the longest streak by a team in postseason history. After tying the game 5-5 in the ninth, the Giants had enough fight life for four more frames.

 

“I think that ball hung up little longer than I wanted to,” Panik said. “I knew I hit it well and I knew it was going to at least get off the wall, but it felt like forever for that thing to get off the wall.

 

If we’re breathing, we’re still fighting. In the eighth inning, all it took is [Brandon] Belt to get on base and then everything started to go for us.”
Bumgarner’s shaky start wasn’t that bad after San Francisco’s offense backed him for the win. He got out of the first unscathed after allowing a double to Kris Bryant. But by the second Bumgarner unraveled allowing three runs that quieted the sellout crowd. Addison Russell was hit by pitch and Javier Baez followed with a single to third baseman Conor Gillaspie. While Gillaspie stopped the ball from traveling beyond him, he failed to get the out at first in time.

 

Arrieta took a high pitch into the left field bleachers making it a 3-0 game. No pitcher has homered off off Bumgarner until tonight. The three-run homer by Arrieta snapped Bumgarner’s scoreless inning streak at 24 consecutive frames. The Cubs pitchers have six of the teams 9 RBIs this series. The 6 RBIs tie the record for most RBIs by a team’s pitchers in a postseason.

 

“I obviously thought I could’ve done better today, if it wasn’t for that one pitch,” said Bumgarner. “The three runs scored there, you never know what’s going to happen but it played out differently. I had a lot of foul balls and anytime you have a long inning like that it’s tough on the players.”

 

Chicago tried to rally in the third but the Giants defense ended that. Ben Zobrist doubled, Russell hit another single and Bumgarner struck out Baez while forcing Miguel Montero to fly out to end the threat. Since the second inning the Cubs did not scored in any runs until the ninth.

 

San Francisco rallied bottom of the third when Denard Span doubled and Buster Posey drove him in with the Giants first run. San Francisco had six hits off Arrieta through six innings. Bumgarner on the other hand scattered seven hits over five frames. He walked one, struck out four, hit a batter and gave up a home run.

 

Span kept the offense alive, he tripled in the fifth and Brandon Belt’s sacrifice fly drove him in to trim the lead 3-2. The Giants had another opportunity in the sixth but a bad call by the umpires thwarted that. Gillaspie singled, Baez threw to first baseman Anthony Rizzo who caught the ball off the bag but first base umpire John Hirschbeck ruled him out. After further review, the call stood.

 

“We needed to put some runs up,” Crawford said. “Unfortunately when we got him [Arrieta] out of the game, we kinda got something rolling there in the eighth inning. We got some good at-bats and found some holes.”

 

Nothing but bad calls for San Francisco but they didn’t stop believing. Belt led off the eighth with a single. Posey was issued a free pass. And Gillaspie became the “clutch” player of the game when he cleared the bases with a two-run triple making it a 4-3 game. Crawford followed with a RBI single scoring in Gillaspie extending the Giants lead 5-3.

 

Closer Sergio Romo walked Dexter Flower in the ninth to lead off the frame. Bryant followed with a two-run homer to left field to tie the game 5-5. San Francisco went hitless in the ninth, Span grounded out, Belt walked and Posey hit into a double play. Albert Almora Jr. made a diving catch then threw to first after Belt doubled off.

 

On to extra innings, were both teams went scoreless for three frames. It then became a defensive game until the thirteenth, Crawford got on base with a double and Panik followed with a walk-double to seals their victory and force a Game 4 tomorrow at 5:40pm. Tonight marked the Giants seventh postseason walk-off win.

 

“We got it done, that’s all that matters,” said Belt . “We wanted to keep our season alive.”

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San Francisco Giants

Bruce Bochy takes his final bow at Oracle Park

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San Francisco – In front of a sellout crowd, Bruce Bochy tipped his cap for the last time.  Bochy announced his retirement at the start of the season, so the Giants prepared a send-off that was more than the Skipper could handle.  

“This was a tough a day as I’ve ever had,” Bochy said.  “I had no idea that this send-off would be like it was today.”

Despite San Francisco being shutout 9-0 by the Los Angeles Dodgers.  The final game of the season was more about the thirty-sixth manager of the organization than the loss.  Throughout the game there were video tributes on Bochy’s astounding forty-four years in the Majors.  But what brought the tissues out during an emotional ceremony was who showed up to say their final farewells.

The Giants had a few surprises up there sleeves and I have to be quite honest.  It blew me away as well.  After the game, Bochy’s retirement ceremony began with the “Forever” Giants in attendance, Willie Mays, Orlando Cepeda, Felipe Old and Juan Marichal to name a few.  

Former players, including Dodgers manager Dave Roberts jogged onto the field to greet his former teammates.  Barry Bonds took his cap and tossed it on the field.  The crowd roared with laughter and excitement.  After Roberts (who played for Bochy in 2007) embraced Bochy with a hug and handshake he headed back to the dugout.  

“His hat should’ve been thrown,” said Bochy with a smile.

“I wish we would’ve played better for him the entire year,” Brandon Belt said. 

Dereck Rodriguez didn’t have the start he would’ve liked on Bochy’s final game.  Rodriguez loaded the bases after giving up a walk to Chris Taylor and two back-to-back singles to A.J. Pollock and Cory Bellinger.  

Cory Seager knocked a single down the right field line and cleared the bases with a three-run double.  Will Smith followed with a two-run homer to center field to make it a 5-0 game in the first frame.  After Rodriguez put two on in the second, Bochy decided his time on the mound was done.

Sam Selman replaced Rodriguez who walked Bellinger to load the bases again.  Selman forced Seager to ground out to end the threat.  Rodriguez tossed 1.2 innings, allowed five hits, five runs, one home run, struck out two and walked two.  While San Francisco’s defense kept the Dodgers off the board five more frames.

They added three more runs in the seventh and the eighth inning.  After loading the bases for the third time, Sam Coonrod walked Matt Beaty, gave up a single to Kristopher Negron and hit Will Smith with a pitch.  Coonrod walked in a batter after he walked Gavin Lux.  

By the eighth, Joc Peterson led off the frame with a single and back-to-back walks to Chris Taylor and Max Muncy loaded the bases.  Austin Barnes singled Peterson and Taylor score.  Muncy scored on a fielding error by shortstop Mauricio Dubon to make it a 9-0 game. 

Players from the 2010 championship team walked out on the field, Nate Schierholtz, Cody Ross, Edgar Renteria, Brian Wilson, and Aubrey Huff. The 2012 team, Angel Pagan, Barry Zito, Ryan Vogelsong, Santiago Casilla and Marco Scutaro.  And finally from the 2014 team, Javier Lopez, Gregor Blanco, Jake Peavy, Jeremy Affeldt and Tim Lincecum.  Many of these players played all three years but it was Lincecum’s arrival that really choked Bochy up.

“It was just gradually building,” Bochy said on his emotions unraveling during his ceremony.  “And, at the end, Timmy… When he was announced, that put me over the edge.  Timmy’s somebody that’s really close to my heart and for him to come down here, that’s a pretty big deal for me.

He’s a tough one to get a hold of.  I’ve tried to text him.  I’ve tried to see him in Seattle.”

Lincecum never returned to the Giants after leaving almost four years ago.  Invites were unanswered and the guy once known as “The Freak” moved on to play for the Los Angeles Angels and the Texas Rangers.  But what Lincecum did as a Giant was one for the history books.  

Three World Series, four National League Pennants, and twenty-five years as a manager in the Majors.  Bochy’s 2010 championship team was the first to bring a World Series to the organization in fifty-two years.  He’s the fifth manager to to lead a team to three titles in a five year span, joining Connie Mack, Joe McCarthy, Casey Stengel and Joe Torre.

“Seeing Boch get emotional throughout the day, definitely made it hit home,” Buster Posey said on Bochy retiring.  “See him talk a lot.  I’ve never seen him get emotional before.  So, obviously this was a big day for him to say the least.”

“The team called me about this event and I couldn’t have picked a better day to make it special for him,” Former Giant Pagan said.  “It’s his time, it’s his moment and I wanted to be there to thank him personally for everything that he did, not only for me but for all the teammates that I’ve had and all the players that have come through his hands.  So I cannot feel any more grateful to be here and this will make me come back more often.”

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San Francisco Giants

Giants blank Marlins behind Tyler Beede

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San Francisco – Another great performance from rookie Tyler Beede tonight.  He shutout the Florida Marlins and recorded his second start of the season.  The Giants rallied behind Beede and produced one run enough for the 1-0 victory over the Marlins.

“This is a time for these guys to shine and show that they belong up here,” said manager Bruce Bochy.  “You’re hoping that they can pitch here and play here, so it was a really nice job by the three kids today.  That’s a close game, a one-run ballgame that didn’t faze them at all.”

Beede tossed six frames, allowed three hits, walked one and struck out five.  And his backup didn’t disappoint, Ty Rodgers spun 1.2 innings striking out three while Shaun Anderson got the save.  Anderson replaced injured closer Will Smith and recored his second save of the season.

“Those guys have been super impressive all year,” Beede said.  “Rog, what you see from him now is what’s he’s done his whole career in the Minor Leagues.  I’m super happy for him to be able to come up here and continue to be Tyler Rogers.  The Giants are lucky to have guy like that who they can throw out there in big-time situations.”

After five scoreless innings, San Francisco got on the board with a RBI single from Buster Posey.  Florida’s defense did a good job keeping the Giants off the board behind Sandy Alcantara’s pitching.  Alcantara allowed no runs until Stephen Vogt doubled and scored off Posey’s single.

Vogt led off the sixth with a double.  Kevin Pillar grounded out to first baseman, Neil Walker and Vogt advanced to third.  Posey bounced an RBI single over third baseman, Starlin Castro and Vogt scored making it a 1-0 game.

“I thought he took some good swings today,” said Bochy of Posey.  “He ended up getting that big RBI for us.”

The Giants had a few opportunities to control the game.  Vogt and Brandon Crawford both singled in the second but Mauricio Dubon struck out swinging to end the inning.  Brandon Belt who had three hits for the night, singled in the third.  Evan Longoria was hit by a pitch but Vogt flew out to center field to end the threat.  

Belt’s ground-rule double in the fifth was just short of a home run.  Mike Yastrzemski advanced to third on the hit. Longoria grounded out to end the threat, stranding two.  Not the best permformance on offense for the Giants.  As the season end nears, there’s a big opportunity for the younger guys to prove their worth in the Majors.   

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Oakland A's

Giants rally in the eighth for epic win over A’s

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Oakland – The Bay Bridge series is always exciting.  This battle never gets old, and tonight was an epic performance.  Eight runs scored in one frame led to the Giants rally in the eighth.  It was something you just don’t see too often in baseball especially at the Coliseum.

The A’s have been consistent in their wins but tonight, the bullpen failed and former Oakland player, Stephen Vogt capped the night off with a three-run blast against his old team.  San Francisco’s 10-5 win over the A’s was a stellar comeback.  

“Felt like we did’t get out for an hour,” said manager Bob Melvin.

The eighth inning lasted so long, Oakland used four pitchers in one frame.  Vogt had four at-bats that didn’t get him on base.  But his fifth at-bat, capped off a phenomenal offensive outburst for the Giants in the eighth.    

After Vogt lined out, Melvin made a pitching change.  Back-to-back singles from Buster Posey, and Alex Dickerson.  Evan Longoria’s RBI single drove in Posey to make it a 4-3 game.  A.J. Puk replaced Yusmeiro Petit.  A wild pitch by Puk led to Dickerson scoring to tie the game 4-4.

Puk also walked Austin Slater.  Melvin made another change, Lou Trivino replaced Puk.  Kevin Pillar cleared the bases with a double driving in both Longoria and Slater to extend their lead to 6-4.  Then pinch-hitter Donovan Solano and Brandon Crawford hit back-to-back singles.

Melvin made his final switch in the frame with Ryan Butcher replacing Trivino.  After striking out Mike Yastrzemski, Vogt went yard with a three-run home run.  That gave San Francisco a good lead, making the A’s work hard to dig their way out of a hole too deep.

“I think we have to just move on from this one, we’ve been playing well up to this point,” Melvin said.  “We just basically had a bad inning today.”

“It’s just one game, it is what it is,” said Chris Bassitt.  “We can make this a huge deal but it’s just one game.  Lick your wounds, come in tomorrow and do your job.”

Oakland was in control early on, Mark Canha went deep in the second recording his 20th home run.  Josh Phegley’s RBI single in the second made it a 2-0 A’s lead.  Crawford went yard in the fifth to cut the lead in half.  But Oakland’s offense stayed hot.

By the sixth, Bassitt gave up a double to Dickerson and Longoria followed with a single scoring in Dickerson in to tie the game 2-2.  That knocked Bassitt out of the game, and the bullpen took over.  Profar Jurickson led off the frame bottom of the inning with a single.  Phegley’s sacrifice bunt advanced Jurickson to third.  Marcus Semien’s RBI single made it a 3-2 game.  And Matt Olson’s RBI singled drove in Semien to extend the A’s lead 4-2.

The Battle of the Bay Bridge series is always exciting.  Oakland opened up up Mount Davis to accommodate the 53,367 fans that showed up for the series.  With both teams making a push for the postseason, the Bay Bridge series focuses on the rivalry across the bridge.  Vogt a fan favorite in Oakland, had missed the entire 2018 season rehabbing from shoulder injury after he was released by the A’s.

“It was really special for me with the fans,” Vogt said.  I was very moved by them cheering.  The way that I was received the first time back, it really meant a  lot to me.  Obviously, this is a special place for me and for my family.  To come back and have the fans say ‘Thank you’ or ‘Hi’, it was a very neat moment.”

Notes – In Bruce Bochy’s final farewell tour, A’s manager Bob Melvin gifted him with a bottle of red wine from the team.  

Photo by Michael Urakami/MLB

“It’s always a lot of fun (Bay Bridge Series) especially with Mount Davis opened (upper level seating at the Coliseum),” said Melvin.  “As far as Bochy goes, I guess I’ll have a few more wins in my pocket once he retires.  He’s been so big for the Giants and what he’s accomplished.  

He’s been a friend of mine for a long time, we talk quite a bit.  Its hard not to like the opposing team whens he’s over there.  He’s one of the greatest of all time and will be headed to the Hall of Fame, deservingly so.  It’ll be kinda weird knowing this is that last time he’ll managing in Oakland.”

Photo by Michelle Minahen/Oakland Athletics

Athletics Director and head coach, John Beam threw out the first pitch for the A’s vs Giants game.  Beam led his Laney College football team to the State Championship and won in 2018.  He was recognized as leading the #1 team in the nation and as the California Community College Football Coach of the Year.

“I have been coaching football for 40 years,” said Beam.  “I stay in it because of the kids.  I get paid to have fun.”

Before Beam began his career at Laney, he was the head football coach at Skyline High school for 22 years.  The next chapter of his life began as Laney’s Running Backs coach in 2004, and in 2005 he was promoted to Offensive Coordinator where he led an explosive offense that won 3 conference championships and five straight bowl game appearances.  By 2012, Beam was named head coach.

“My assistants are unbelievable, many are Skyline graduates,” Beam explained.  “Friendships that started off as student-teacher developed over time and that’s what I like about this job because I can see those transformations.  People say its a new generation but the kids still want to learn and be taught how to play the game, and we enjoy that.”  

The A’s have been a huge contributor to Oakland schools and community colleges.  They donated $100,000 to the Peralta Community College District after their offer to build a ballpark next door to Laney was shutdown.  Another commitment from the A’s is to support the Peralta College Workforce Development Program.  Which will honor four scholarships annually for student studying business, digital media, communications and technology.

“The A’s have been phenomenal partners with us (Laney College) and with Oakland,” Beam said.  “Our championship rings, the A’s helped pay for them.”  I appreciate the A’s bringing me here to throw out the first pitch.  I wish I would’ve done better with that pitch but [Marcus] Jensen (A’s Bullpen Coach) did good by catching my grounder.”

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