Once again the mild-manner re-, ah, second baseman surveys the scene. The game is tied, bottom of the ninth, Giants against the Cards, the team with the best record in the majors. The Giants have squandered a 4 run lead, left a lot of runners on base all game, but now, the bases are loaded. And this looks like a job for...
Super-Kelby! With two strikes he scorches a liner past the overshifted infield, and the Giants win 5-4.
True, the ball didn't go nearly as far (and again I repeat myself) as the home run by Marlon Byrd. Not a three run shot to center this time. Nah. A grand slam to center. Yesterday Kelby hit the seventh grand slam of the year for the Giants, tying a club record. Tonight the record was broken with the eighth.
Kelby Tomlinson also made a terrific play in the field in the top of the ninth that helped keep the Cards from scoring, and set up his own dramatics. With his slam yesterday and the winning hit tonight, both before sold out crowds at home, he's becoming a social media star. Only a matter of time before the oversized Clark Kent glasses show up in the stands, if they haven't already.
Mike Leake pitched his second strong game in a row at home, and again doesn't get a win. His wild pitch however was costly. Gregor Blanco was back in the lineup and had two hits, and drew a walk in the ninth.
Brandon Crawford was really missed this game in the field, and the news of a faster recovery yesterday was reversed today. The soonest he'll be back in the field is in L.A. Matt Cain went on the DL, Chris Heston was recalled to replace him, he starts on Sunday. Angel Pagan also won't rejoin the club until Sept. 1.
The Dodgers also won so the Giants only stay at 2.5 back, but the more games they win now, the more pressure there is on the Dodgers when they go to L.A. next week. The Pirates won, and so thanks to the Giants, they gain a game on St. Louis.
It's kind of amazing but with all these injuries, the only conspicuous weakness the Giants have in the field and at bat is Adrianza when he's at short (that's with Aoki and Blanco back). The starting rotation still has some gaps but the bullpen is making good use of young arms like Strickland, Osich and Broadway as well as the veterans. The expanded roster is going to help the starting situation, if not directly, then with long relievers.