For a moment, it looked like the late 9th inning rally was all in vain.
With the Phillies looking to comeback in the bottom of the 9th with no outs, closer Sergio Romo and the Giants managed to tightrope out of danger to seal a 2-1 victory for San Francisco (48-59).
Romo managed to get Phillies right fielder Laynce Nix and catcher Carlos Ruiz to fly out conescutively with neither pop fly being deep enough to get the tying run in from 3rd. Romo would then get pinch hitter Erik Kratz to ground into a fielder’s choice to 3rd to end the game.
“I think I was pretty fortunate,” Romo said. “The ninth inning off Papelbon was not an easy thing to do. It was a great win for us.”
The Giants were down 1-0 entering the 9th with Phillies Closer Jonathan Papelbon coming in for a save that he would not get. San Francisco outfielder Hunter Pence would lead off the inning with an infield single followed by a single by first baseman Brett Pill allowing Pence to get to 3rd.
Then Roger Kieschnick pinched hit for Jeff Francoeur who went 0-3 in the game. Kieschnick would hit a single to right allowing Pence to score tying the game and Pill to move over to 3rd base. Kieschnick had only made his major league debut the night before going 2-5 with two RBI’s in a 9-2 Giants win over the Phillies.
After the 26 year old rookie outfielder tied the game, San Francisco shortstop Joaquin Arias managed to hit the 4th straight Giants’ single of the inning giving the Orange and Black a one run lead.
The Giants would not be able to get anymore runs, however. After a failed sac bunt attempt by pinch hitter Gregor Blanco which resulted in Kieschnick being thrown out at 3rd, Papelbon would walk Brandon Belt to load the bases with one out. However, Giants second baseman Marco Scutaro would ground into a fielder’s choice to short where the Phillies would get Arias out at home. Then third baseman Pablo Sandoval would ground out to short to retire the side.
Sergio Romo was then called from the Giants’ pen to close out the game hoping to not blow his save opportunity. First batter, pinch hitter Delmon Young would hit a grounder to Arias at 3rd who could not field it cleanly. Young would be safe at 1st and would be pulled from the game in favor of pinch runner John McDonald. After that, Phillies third baseman Cody Asche would get to 1st safely on a bunt single that Sergio Romo could not make a play on. Romo had slipped while deciding whether to throw to 2nd or 1st base therefore preventing him from making an out.
“I wanted to go to second, but changed my mind and that’s when I fell,” Romo said.
Romo would then load the bases hitting outfielder John Mayberry Jr. with a pitch. Somehow, the 30 year old closer know primarily for his sharp breaking slider, managed to tip toe out of danger with a couple of fly balls and a grounder to end the game.
“Romo did a great job by not panicking,” Giants Starter Matt Cain said afterwards.
Cain would actually get the credited with the win in this game improving to 7-6 on the season. ”The Horse” would allow just one run in eight innings while striking out seven. The one run allowed by Cain was off a single by opposing pitcher Cole Hamels allowing Laynce Nix to score in the 5th inning.
Hamels had an impressive night on the mound in a no decision effort. He allowed no runs on seven hits and one walk in eight innings of work.
The Phillies would just take game one of this series by a final of 7-3. Giants starter Barry Zito (L, 4-8) was pulled in the middle of the 4th after allowing four earned runs on five hits and two walks.
San Francisco was able to recoup for game two and win by a final of 9-2 breaking a five game losing streak at the time. The Giants were able to plate four runs in the 1st and then three runs in the 3rd while starter Chad Gaudin (W, 5-2) allowed just one run in seven innings.
The Giants now leave The City of Brotherly Love and head to Florida to take on the Tampa Bay Rays (64-44) in a three game series. San Francisco’s probables are Madison Bumgarner (10-6), Tim Lincecum (5-11), and Barry Zito (4-8). Tampa Bay’s probables are Chris Archer (6-3), David Price (6-5), and Roberto Hernandez (6-11).
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Written by Daniel Trucios