The Giants wasted a solid start by Jake Peavy as they dropped a very winnable game to the Rockies 3-2 to open a seven-game homestand.
Colorado got on the board right away with an ugly first frame from the Giants. Charlie Blackmon reached on a throwing error by Joe Panik, moved to second on a fly ball that Michael Morse fielded lazily, and ended up at third when a pick-off attempt by Peavy bounced off of second base and caromed into left field. Blackmon scored on the next play, a sacrifice fly off the bat of Justin Morneau, and Colorado was up 1-0.
San Francisco got the run right back in the bottom of the first when Angel Pagan led off with a double, and Buster Posey singled him home. Andrew Susac’s first home run at AT&T Park gave the Giants a 2-1 lead in the second, but the black and orange defense unraveled again in the top of the fourth.
A throwing error by Brandon Crawford put Drew Stubbs on to open the inning, and an infield hit followed by yet another E6 put runners on second and third with no outs. Peavy then balked in a run, and a Corey Dickerson sacrifice fly gave the Rockies a 3-2 lead.
Unfortunately for Peavy (3-13), the four (!) Giants errors were enough to hand him another tough-luck loss. He threw seven innings and gave up six hits, just one earned run (three overall), one walk, and struck out five on 102 pitches, 72 strikes. The San Francisco offense just simply couldn’t figure out Tyler Matzek (3-9), who surrendered just the two runs and eight hits over seven innings. Matzek struck out seven with his 90 pitches, 56 of which were strikes.
Giants frustrations reached their boiling point in the top of the seventh when, with two outs, Peavy allowed a single to D.J. LaMahieu before walking Matzek on some very, very close pitches (ok ok, some were definitely strikes). Blackmon then singled to right, and Hunter Pence made a great throw to home. LaMahieu was originally called safe by home plate ump Doug Eddings, but the Giants challenged and the call was overturned to end the inning. Bruce Bochy and Peavy had a chat with Eddings at the end of the inning.
“I felt like we had a guy out at home, I felt like those pitches were strikes,” Peavy said post-game. “Yeah, I had a lot to talk to him about at that point in time.”
Pence led off the top of the eighth with a solid single, but Posey was called out on strikes by Eddings on a ball below the zone. And that was enough for Bochy, who yelled something from the dugout, was immediately tossed, and then came onto the field to give Eddings a piece of his mind. And, you know, also kick a little bit of dirt onto home plate for good measure.
“Obviously, I didn’t like it, that’s why I wasn’t around to watch the rest of the game. It’s a critical pitch, with two strikes, and you got Posey up there. That’s a tough way to end that at bat.”
But despite the issues with Eddings, this was a game the Giants should have won. They out-hit the Rockies 9-6, left six men on base, and – oh yeah – committed all those errors.
“We made four errors. That’s not gonna help our cause,” a frustrated Bochy said. “If you do that, you’d better score some runs. We got two early, and then we got shut down. We got the lead-off hitter on a couple times, didn’t do much with it. Overall, just not a well-played game, and it caught up with us.”
San Francisco is now 10-24 in their last 34 home games. Monday nights loss put them five games behind the Dodgers in the National League West and a half-game behind the Atlanta Braves for the second wild card spot. If they’re going to make a move for the postseason, the time is now, and Peavy knows it.
“We’ve gotta beat everybody. When you’re playing down the stretch and trying to get in like we’re trying to do, you’ve gotta beat everybody…We’ve just got to focus on what we can do as a better team, and that’s play better baseball all the way around…we’ve all gotta do more.”
Madison Bumgarner (14-9, 3.17) will look to stop the skid on Tuesday night as he takes on Jorge De La Rosa (13-8, 4.21).