After a tough weekend series in which they were swept by the visiting Dodgers to lose their outright hold of first place, the Giants sent their young 22-year-old lefty Madison Bumgarner (11-6) out to end a tough four game losing streak on Monday night.
Bumgarner, who turns 23 on Wednesday, threw well enough to win as he pitched six strong innings allowing only two runs while striking out nine, but wasn’t part of the final decision.
He was the pitcher of record and on board to win his 12th game until Sergio Romo (3-2) coughed up a two run lead in the top of the eighth inning when Scott Hairston drove an 0-and-1 fastball over the left field wall. The Mets would score four runs in the inning all charged to Romo.
It was Romo’s first appearance since he gave up a two run home run in the tenth inning to Hanley Ramirez Friday night to put the Dodgers up 5-to-3. Romo took the loss in that game as it ended up being the deciding blow.
In Monday night’s game, the Giants would battle back. Down by two runs entering the bottom of the ninth, Melky Cabrera shot a ball into left field for his second hit of the night.
Buster Posey followed with a double to the gap in left centerfield scoring Cabrera. After Gregor Blanco sacrificed him over to third base, Nate Schierholtz topped a ball up the first base line.
The Mets first baseman Ike Davis charged the ball but caught it on an in-between hop. Without putting his body in front of the ball, it skipped over his glove and down the line into right field. Schierholtz ended up on second with one out and a tie game.
The inning ended when Scutaro struck out looking with bases loaded, sending the game into extra innings.
The Mets wasted no time scoring in extra frames as Hairston hit his second home run of the night off of Santiago Casilla (4-5) and the Mets added another taking the lead 8-to-6.
The Giants would battle back again in the bottom of the tenth scoring a run on a couple of walks and a hit by Schierholtz, but fell one run short as Brandon Belt flied out to the warning track in dead centerfield to end the game.
One bright spot for Bochy and the Giants on Monday was their at bats were better and they found a way to plate seven runs. What hurt them tonight was the ineffectiveness of their bullpen.
“We swung the bats better but we made some mistakes that came back to get us” Bochy remarked. “They battled hard, to give up the lead like that and they came right back got a couple and had a chance there at the end.”
Bochy then elaborated on his relievers.
“The pen struggled tonight. We had the right guys out there, setup guy and are closer and they scored off of them. The only thing you can do in this game is get your guys out there and we did that. Sergio’s been so good and he’s going to have his hiccups just like Casilla.”
Due to a Dodger loss, the Giants remain in a tie for first place with Los Angeles. The Dodgers lost to the Arizona Diamondbacks, who are now just three-and-a-half games back.
The Giants will try and snap their losing streak tomorrow as they send Tim Lincecum (4-11) to the mound to battle the Mets rookie pitcher Matt Harvey (1-0). Game time is 7:15pm.