|May 11, 2003||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
LP J. Schmidt (3-1) 4 2/3IP 5H 4R 4ER 2BB 3SO 0HR 2.53 ERA
Today should have been a very emotional game for Jason Schmidt, pitching on Mother's Day after his own mother passed away not so long ago. On a gloomy day of an ugly overcast, he took the mound for the Giants as the Braves sent in left hander Mike Hampton.
The Giants started the game by taking a 1-0 lead in the top of the first inning. Neifi Perez, replacing Ray Durham who is on the 15 day disabled list from a sprained ankle in yesterday's game, hit a double. Andres Galarraga, made his second straight start, hit a hard ground ball that went through second baseman, Marcus Giles, to score Perez.
The Braves came back in the bottom of the first starting with a single by Rafael Furcal. Giles then made up for his defensive error in the top of the inning by hitting a triple to score Furcal. With Giles on third base, Gary Sheffield smacked a deep sacrifice fly out and Giles scored. Schmidt struck out Chipper Jones and Andruw Jones to end the inning.
In the top of the second, the Giants wasted no time in getting the lead back. Edgardo Alfonzo had a standup double and Yorvit Torrealba singled to score Alfonzo, tying the game. Hampton walked Ruben Rivera, which brought up rookie Jason Ellison, who was making his first major league start. Ellison tapped a ground ball and Torrealba was tagged out between third and home while the runners were sent on a hit-and-run call by Felipe Alou. Perez followed with another hit to drive in Rivera, and to give the Giants a one run lead.
The score stayed 3-2, with Schmidt and Hampton being able to contain the batters. It was the fateful fifth inning that was the deciding factor of the game.
In the bottom of the fifth, Javy Lopez doubled and Hampton put down a bunt to advance Lopez to third. Furcal hit a double and Lopez scored to tie the game again. Schmidt walked Giles, and with Sheffield at the plate, threw a wild pitch that enabled Furcal and Giles to advance a base. With runners on third and second, Schmidt followed his wild pitch with another wild pitch. Furcal scored, giving the Braves a 3-4 lead.
After intentionally walking C. Jones, and with two outs and runners on first and third, Schmidt was forced to stop working on A. Jones because rain started pouring down on the field. This was a tough break for Schmidt and the Giants because A. Jones was 0-2 for the game with two strikeouts against Schmidt. All the Giants could do was wait and hope for the weather to come through so they may have a chance to win the game. Because the game was already into the bottom of the fifth inning, it counted as an official game if the game was to be cancelled.
After waiting for an hour and fifty-two minutes, the game resumed with pitching changes on both ends. Jim Brower came in for Schmidt and Trey Hodges for Hampton. Brower finished off A. Jones by striking him out with two pitches.
In the top of the sixth inning, Ellison collected his first major league hit, but became one of the eleven men that were left on base for the game for the Giants. The Giants were two of thirteen for driving in men in scoring position in this game.
Lefty Scott Eyre relieved Brower in the top of the sixth. Eyre pitched two innings and gave up two hits but no runs. He obtained one strikeout and did not walk anyone.
Felix Rodriguez took over the mound in the bottom of the eighth. With runners on first and third, Lopez broke the game open with a three run jack.
After giving up a hit to Perez, John Smoltz finished off the Giants in the top of the ninth inning. The Giants will be glad to be heading home tonight after losing this series, but satisfied to be collecting a winning record on this road trip.
SFDugout.com Players Of The Game: There isn't much for the Giants to celebrate about, only frustration and relief to be going home. Jason Ellison made his major league debut and got his first hit, giving the Giants another reliable rookie to depend on if his service is ever needed. Scott Eyre pitched a beautiful two innings to contain the Braves for a while, and Neifi Perez came up with four hits. Even though it didn't matter, Perez got a hit off Smoltz in the ninth inning after battling and fouling off everything Smoltz threw at him. Pretty impressive for a guy who owns a cold bat.
Sara Kwan was born in San Francisco and raised in the Bay Area. She currently writes game recaps and other articles for SFDugout.com. Sara can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org