The San Francisco Giants finally created some separation from their opponents on Wednesday after 5 consecutive games decided by 1-run. Granted it was an incremental improvement—a 4-2 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks still requiring the services of Camilo Doval in the 9th—but it felt like another step up out of the valley the offense found themselves after last month.
Two days out of an ineffectual July, San Francisco has pieced together two come-from-behind wins against a key divisional and wild card opponent.
Down 2-runs in the 1st, San Francisco plated 4 unanswered runs against debut starter Slade Cecconi and his relief Tyler Gilbert across the 5th and 6th innings, culminating with J.D. Davis’s 2-run double with the bases-loaded.
J.D. saw the first pitch and said, "That'll do." pic.twitter.com/8icEArdVvG— SF Giants on NBCS (@NBCSGiants) August 3, 2023
Bashful as always around an unfamiliar arm, the offensive didn’t land a hit off Cecconi until the 4th, with the rookie recording his first career strikeout on a (excuse me for this) knob-to-knob strikeout.
One of the strangest strikeouts you’ll ever see pic.twitter.com/IhambIvTmz— SF Giants on NBCS (@NBCSGiants) August 3, 2023
After Wilmer Flores broke the seal with a double in the 4th (3 for 4 on the night—what’d ya expect?) The bats rallied for 8 more hits and 4 runs over the next two innings, the outburst book-ended by first-pitch attacks by J.D. Davis, who seems to be letting off some steam after a July’s sub-par .179/.261/.359 batting line.
Davis led-off the 5th with a single and was brought home by Brandon Crawford doing the impossible: hitting a ball over the heads of the fleet-footed and immensely frustrating Arizona outfield. Crawford claimed his 28th triple at Oracle Park—the most all-time—with a glorious belly-flop slide, hooking his flipper into the bag to avoid the reaching tag of Jace Peterson.
Isan Díaz, who had been hitless in 16 plate appearances over 5 games this season (all against Arizona), brought home Crawford with a single to right. The rally happened fast: Díaz’s single came on Cecconi’s fourth pitch of the inning. It went south even quicker when Luis Matos grounded into a double-play on the first pitch of his at-bat.
Flores, Joc Pederson and Patrick Bailey landed singles against LHP Tyler Gilbert in the 6th to load the bases for Davis and his eventual game-winning double. Davis
Isan Díaz's first hit as a Giant ties the game pic.twitter.com/Fs4scwtd4H— SF Giants on NBCS (@NBCSGiants) August 3, 2023
Key hits by Díaz and Davis with runners in scoring position were positive signs of cracks in the stone slump-gates, but the dam hasn’t burst yet. Of course, it’s ridiculous to expect a team to score every potential run that reaches base, but the 2 runs in the 6th still felt a bit of a let-down when San Francisco had runners in scoring position and nobody out after Davis’s extra base hit.
Again in the 7th, with runners on the corners and less than 2-outs, Pederson popped out without consequence to shallow left and Bailey rolled out to first. All in all went 3 for 11 with runners in scoring position (only 2 of those hits scored runs) and left 7 men on base.
On the other side of the ball, Logan Webb regained his form after a 2-run 1st, throwing 105 pitches over 7 complete innings, allowing only 4 hits, 1 BB while striking out 5.
Three of Arizona’s hits came in that early inning, they managed only 1 other hit: a Lourdes Gurriel Jr. double in the 7th while the only other base runner for the D-Backs was a lead-off walk in the 3rd that was quickly erased by a double-play.
Logan Webb jokes tonight was the first game he hasn't allowed a ground-ball base hit pic.twitter.com/zFY8B700Ls— SF Giants on NBCS (@NBCSGiants) August 3, 2023
The quality start was Webb’s 11th in a row at home—currently the longest streak in the Majors—and 17th of the season. Maybe more impressive at this point in the season is the fact that Webb didn’t allow a home run. Wednesday’s win was only the 10th time that he hadn’t given up a four-bagger in a start.
Wednesday’s win was the Giants’ 60th of the season—the third team in the National League to reach that mark (Braves, Dodgers) with a two-game lead in the Wild Card standings.