Giants reward MadBum after his HR vs. A's
SAN FRANCISCO -- Joe Panik and Matt Duffy collaborated on a tiebreaking sixth-inning rally that lifted the Giants to a 2-1 Interleague triumph Saturday over the Oakland A's at AT&T Park.
With the score deadlocked at 1, Panik prolonged the sixth by doubling with two outs off A's starter Chris Bassitt (0-3). Duffy followed by stroking a single to right field that scored Panik. San Francisco, which has won 10 of its past 11 games, leads the Majors with 190 two-out runs.
"We don't have guys who are going to hit 50 home runs, especially in a park like this," Duffy said. "We have to grind out every at-bat. We don't care how many outs there are."
Bassitt pitched respectably for six innings, yielding five hits and both of the Giants' runs. Unfortunately for Bassitt and the A's, they faced Madison Bumgarner, the San Francisco ace who allowed Oakland's lone run and five hits in seven innings. Josh Phegley's fourth-inning RBI double accounted for the A's scoring.
Not only did Bumgarner excel on the mound, but he opened the scoring in the third inning with his third homer of the season.
"He won the silver bat last year for a reason," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said, referring to Bumgarner being named the top hitter at his position in 2014.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Tough when it counts: Bumgarner appeared to lack his best stuff, though he has set the bar so high that it's difficult to tell whether he's operating at peak efficiency. One thing was certain on Saturday: Bumgarner never gave in. He held the A's hitless in seven at-bats with runners in scoring position, preventing rallies before they started.
Giants starters suddenly have pitched into the seventh inning for three games in a row. That, combined with Thursday's scheduled off-day, has eased fears about the club's overworked bullpen. "We're fresh in the 'pen. That's a good thing," Bochy said.
Bassitt impresses: Finally armed with an opportunity to remain in the A's rotation, following the losses of Scott Kazmir to trade and Jesse Hahn to injury, Bassitt delivered a strong performance in his first start back from Triple-A, striking out four and walking none in his six-inning, two-run outing. The right-hander has allowed no more than two runs in each of his four big-league starts this season but has yet to win any of them. More >
Casilla's career high: Giants closer Santiago Casilla recorded his 25th save, matching his total from 2012. Confronting the challenge of facing three left-handed-batting pinch-hitters in a row, Casilla retired Josh Reddick and Stephen Vogt before Ike Davis walked. Billy Burns singled, but Casilla maintained order by fanning Marcus Semien.
Cycle in sight: A's second baseman Ben Zobrist finished a home run shy of the cycle, singling in the first, notching his second triple of the season in the third and lining a double to left field in the fifth. He didn't even get a chance to swing the bat in the eighth, instead drawing a four-pitch walk against Sergio Romo. Zobrist is 4-for-7 in the first two games of this series.
"You could see early on he was tracking the ball pretty well," A's manager Bob Melvin said. "He's seeing the ball as well as he's seen probably all year to this point."
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Bumgarner's home run was the first allowed by an A's pitcher to an opposing pitcher since 1972, when Baltimore's Dave McNally went deep off Oakland southpaw Ken Holtzman.
The A's successfully challenged a safe call in the fifth inning, when Brandon Crawford tried for a double against the throw of A's right fielder Jake Smolinski. The call was overturned for the second out of the frame.
Athletics: The A's will close out their three-game Interleague set in San Francisco with right-hander Kendall Graveman on the mound in Sunday's 1:05 p.m. PT finale. Graveman has an 8.18 ERA in his last two starts after posting a 1.26 ERA over his previous four starts. He has never faced the Giants.
Giants: A's fans might struggle with divided loyalties in Sunday's series finale as Oakland faces San Francisco right-hander Tim Hudson. Baseball's leading active winner began his superb career with a 1999-2004 stint for Oakland.
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