Giants Bat's Heat Up In St. Louis
First off, as has been the trend all year long, they got a terrific start out of Madison Bumgarner, who even was a threat at the plate, hitting his 2nd double of the season and scoring 2 runs to raise his batting average to .211! He's swinging it better then some of their everyday players, and is probably the best pitcher in baseball with 6 losses, so he probably felt like he had to get it done himself! But on this day, they got all the runs they would need on just one swing of the bat by Andres Torres, who hit a high, deep fly ball that looked like a deep fly out, but carried over the wall for a fourth-inning grand-slam. Before Torres did that though, the Giants already gave MadBum the lead, thanks to a Cody Ross solo homer, and RBI singles by Miguel Tejada and Brandon Crawford. The 24 year-old Crawford had yet another strong showing, reaching base 2 times, putting up good at-bats in all 4 plate appearances and stealing a base, while providing the rock-solid defense up the middle. In some ways, his UCLA background and his patient plate approach remind me a bit of a less-powerful version of Chase Utley, not saying he's going to be the next Utley, just that there are similarities! But Monday's game really was all about Bumgarner, who just got stronger and stronger as the game went on. Madison left after 7 strong innings, allowing 6 hits and and 2 runs while striking out 5 vs. the tough, right-handed dominant Cardinal offense.
After Bumgarner departed, the game kind of went quietly into the afternoon. The Giants got the big hit from Torres and they made it stand! Only and Albert Pujols solo homer would mark up the scoreboard for both teams after the 7th, and the Giants held on to win 7-3. Sergio Romo, the bullpen's most consistent arm since opening day threw another scoreless inning in the ninth to shut the door in the non-save situation, lowering his season WHIP to a ridiculous 0.55, which has to one of the best WHIP's, if not the best, of any reliever in baseball right now. So now they'll likely go back to the hotels and do some watching of their own as the Diamondbacks play host to the Marlins this evening. In the midst of their offensive breakdown and the loss of Buster Posey, they also lost their place atop the NL West, when they had a 4 game lead on the D-Backs before Posey went down. Monday's win was the first victory since Buster went down in which the Giants controlled from the beginning. They had that comeback win Friday night behind Timmy, but even in that game, they were playing from behind for most of the game, so it was a nice change of pace to get out to an early lead for a change. It just goes to show you what will happen when this team scores a couple early runs, with their starting pitching.
MLB Draft: It's not as significant this year as it's been for the Giants over the last 4-5 seasons when the team has had a top-10 pick, but June's MLB amateur draft is set to take place just 1 week from today on June 6th. We'll do a draft preview post between now and then discussing some of the players that could fall to the Giants, who have the 28th pick. And we'll also get in touch with our draft and college baseball expert, Brian Foley who runs College Baseball Daily, the best NCAA baseball blog around, hands down! Just wanted to remind Giants fans that we will have a whole new batch of prospects joining the organization here in a few days!