8 walks too much for D-backs to overcome

August 23rd, 2020

It was a contrast both on the mound and at the plate for the D-backs and Giants on Saturday night.

The Giants' Tyler Anderson threw strikes -- he didn’t walk a batter in throwing his first career complete game -- while D-backs pitchers gave up eight free passes.

In the batter’s box, the Giants patiently worked those walks while 20 of the 27 outs the D-backs made came in three or fewer pitches.

It all added up to the D-backs' fourth straight loss, this one by a 5-1 margin at Oracle Park.

The D-backs wrap up their five-game trip to the Bay Area on Sunday afternoon as they try to avoid a winless trip.

“The name of the game is putting the ball on the plate and when we do, we have a lot of success,” D-backs manager Torey Lovullo said. “We can make some quality pitches and get some quick, easy outs. That’s what happened with their pitcher tonight. He was on the attack, he was changing speeds.”

The D-backs came out hacking against Anderson and that resulted in some low pitch-count innings for the left-hander. He tossed just seven in the second, nine in the third and eight in the fourth.

“He was throwing a lot of strikes and we didn’t want to let him get ahead in the count,” D-backs outfielder David Peralta said. “Sometimes you have to tip your cap. I feel like we were pretty aggressive with him and it wasn’t working out our way. He was mixing his pitches -- fastball, sinker, cutter and changeup. We want to be aggressive at home plate. It didn’t work out our way this time. That’s baseball.”

As for the walks, starter was able to pitch around his early-inning command issue.

The right-hander walked the first three batters in the first, but managed to get out of the inning with just one run scoring.

The issue, he said, was that he was rushing to the plate and that made his cut fastball move too much, so he was missing with it off the plate. Once he ironed that out, he was lights-out the rest of the way before departing after six.

Gallen’s performance of one run over six innings was a bit historic as he tied Aaron Sele for the most consecutive starts to begin a Major League career without allowing more than three earned runs. Sele set the mark of 21 in 1993-94.

While Gallen was able to avoid getting hurt by the walks, the same couldn’t be said of relievers and in the seventh.

Grace, the team’s lone lefty in the bullpen with Andrew Chafin on the injured list, started the inning by walking Brandon Crawford after being ahead 0-2, then allowed a double and another walk to load the bases.

“Yeah, obviously that first guy, the lefty Crawford, got ahead 0-2 and [Grace] just didn’t finish the job, probably started to get too fine with the slider," Lovullo said. "Leading off with the walk there, it’s not good.”

Guerra came on and walked the first two batters he faced, forcing in a pair of runs in what would become a four-run inning that put the game on ice for the Giants.