So, it wasn’t the best day in the world for Bay Area sports. Just putting that out there.
The San Francisco Giants lost to the Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday night, dropping the series opener 2-1. Chris Taylor hit a two-run home run off of Alex Wood in the third inning, and that was all the Dodgers needed. The Giants scrapped and clawed and tried to make a game of it, but they also found out the hard way that it’s difficult to score runs when you only have two hits,
They did score once, even though a hit wasn’t involved: two walks and an error by Trevor Bauer allowed the lead to be cut in half, but relying on gifts from an unfriendly pitcher is not exactly a sustainable way to win a ball game.
But, as you can probably surmise from the aforementioned two hits tidbit, the opportunities were few and far between. They had just four at-bats with runners in scoring position and failed to do anything with them. And it wasn’t as if they got unlucky: they struck out 13 times, and had only one ball in play that had an expected batting average that exceeded .500.
They just got shut down by a very good, albeit extremely annoying pitcher, who egged on the booing Giants crowd when he got removed, and also irked Mike Krukow.
I guess the Giants broadcast team isn't a fan of the Trevor Bauer sword celebration pic.twitter.com/OBn99KFR3f— Blake Harris (@BlakeHarrisTBLA) May 22, 2021
Alex Wood is also a very good pitcher, but he’s not quite as good as Bauer (although he’s eternally more likable), and that was the primary difference in the ballgame. The Dodgers threatened a bit against Wood — he allowed eight hits in six innings — but he held them to just that home run. He did his part, and then the bullpen — comprised of an inning each from Zack Littell, Caleb Baragar, and Jarlin García — did theirs.
Just not quite enough.
It’s not fun to lose to the Dodgers, but there’s the awkward moral victory that looms over all of this: it’s fun that the Giants are here. We’re approaching the two-month mark of the season, and the Giants just played a very meaningful game against a team that just broke out the checkbook after having a .717 winning percentage and taking home a championship.
And even with the loss, the Giants are ahead of them in the standings.
I won’t say that the real treasure is the friends we made along the way, but ... it’s some of it, ya know?