The San Francisco Giants led the Seattle Mariners 6-5 when the game concluded.
And with that, the Giants moved over .500 for the first time since Aug. 1, with their 22nd win of the year.
Of those 22, 11 have come in games where the Giants are trailing.
If you’re new to math, 11 is half of 22. You can quote me on that if you’d like.
I’m not saying we should be rooting for the Giants to fall behind — all 21 of their loses have come in games they at one point trailed, it’s worth noting — but their offense and resolve are strong enough that most deficits feel like they can be overcome.
Tuesday’s did, and ultimately was.
Farhan Zaidi has gotten a fair amount of flack since joining the Giants front office before the 2019 season, and it’s easy to see why: he came from the Dodgers.
He also seems to be supremely talented at finding and acquiring talent. It’s totally fine to think the jury is still out on him — the Giants haven’t done anything yet — but anyone thinking he hasn’t added key players was slapped in the face on Tuesday by those very players.
Here’s how the Giants scored:
In the second inning, Brandon Belt singled home Donovan Solano (a Zaidi signing), who had tripled to get in scoring position.
In the third inning, Alex Dickerson (a Zaidi trade acquisition) hit a home run.
Later in the inning Belt again singled home Solano (still a Zaidi signing), who had doubled to get in scoring position.
In the fourth inning Mauricio Dubón (a Zaidi trade acquisition) tied the game with a two-run homer, which was a glorious sight to see.
And in the seventh inning the Giants finally — finally! — took the lead when Darin Ruf (a Zaidi signing) popped one over the fence.
Things just got Ruf for the Mariners pic.twitter.com/KjZ3vq2ySM— SF Giants on NBCS (@NBCSGiants) September 9, 2020
Once the lead was secured, the first pitcher the Giants turned to was Jarlin García (a Zaidi signing), and he shut down the Mariners emphatically.
That’s not to say it was only Zaidi additions that contributed. Belt had those two RBI singles. Brandon Crawford played stellar defense. Joey Bart looked strong behind the dish, and Pablo Sandoval had a two-hit game. Four of the five pitchers were Giants before Zaidi was.
But it sure was a good game for anyone on the fence about Zaidi’s ability to identify talent — and that’s without Mike Yastrzemski doing anything!
More importantly, it was a good game for the Giants postseason hopes. It moved them to 22-21, and kept them in one of the Wild Card slots. It pushed their winning streak to four games, and gave them a 14-5 record over their last 19.
They’re playing good baseball, and if they can keep doing so they’ll play more than 60 games.
A few notes:
- Logan Webb did not have it. There have been plenty of times this year where he didn’t deserve the runs on his stat sheet, but he deserved all 5 earned runs against Seattle. With that said, he still managed to get through 5 innings, which was impressive work and showed improvement.
- Tony Watson was trusted with the save situation, and came through. His ERA is now 0.64. I’m not sure why the Giants didn’t trust him at the start of the season — perhaps because he had missed most of camp — but he’s probably their best reliever right now.
- Caleb Baragar once again bailed out a pitcher who got in trouble. Admittedly that pitcher was himself this time, but still.
- Luis Basabe, who was called up right before the game, got to put on a glove in an MLB game for the first time in his career. Basabe had previously debuted when the Giants got to add a 29th man for their doubleheader against the Los Angeles Dodgers, but he only appeared as a pinch-runner. On Tuesday he came in as a defensive substitute in left field, and even made a nice play when a ball was hit his way.
- The Giants will play for an abbreviated sweep on Wednesday. I suggest they go for it. What’s the worst that could happen?
- Why did I ask that?