The SF Giants return home after sweeping the three game series at Arizona. Matt Moore pitched a strong, confident game, and Hunter Pence was the all out star of the series, blasting the winning runs in this one with an opposite field double.
With the wind at their back they take on San Diego before upcoming and potentially fateful series with St. Louis and six of their last 20 games with LA. Apart from those games, the Giants' schedule is easier than the Dodgers. The Dodgers lead by 3 games.
Sunday's win at last felt like the first half Giants. They weren't overpowering but they were determined and clutch. Except for Moore, who was at times overpowering.
The other day I saw an evaluation of their second half troubles by somebody who writes about the Giants professionally. He notes the disruption caused by the Matt Duffy trade, which is exactly what I was afraid of when it happened. The team chemistry got thrown. It left a bad taste.
Now maybe they're overcoming it (and Duffy would probably be unavailable to them anyway, as he is out for the season requiring surgery.) It's hard to complain about the guy they got for Duffy, Matt Moore, with a very near no-hitter and his performance Sunday.
Hunter Strickland saved Sunday's game and so may be trusted as a closer. High hopes in that role as well for Derek Law when he returns. Casilla and Romo may have had their day, though they can still have their excellent outings. But Casilla can't be trusted to pitch the ninth.
A big finish is really important to this particular team. Now it actually seems possible.