|July 13, 2003||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
LP J. Brower (5-2) 1 1/3IP 4H 6R 6ER 3BB 1SO 0HR 4.47 ERA
In the last game before the All-Star break, the Dbacks sent their answer to Jerome Williams to the mound, Brandon Webb. The Giants counter with Jim Brower, the reliever who was pulled up to be in the starting rotation.
Webb didn't look anything but a rookie in the first inning where he gave up a solo jack to J.T. Snow. Barry Bonds walked on four pitches and Jose Cruz, Jr. then proceeded to hit a two-run roundtripper into the pool in right center field. The Giants must have been hot, they kept hitting balls into that pool. Rich Aurilia and Edgardo Alfonzo extended the two out inning with back-to-back singles and Webb helped the Giants out by hitting the next two batters with pitches. With the bases loaded, Brower was struck with Webb's pitch that forced in Aurilia as the Giants' fourth run of the inning.
The Dbacks took no time in coming back. With some help from the home plate umpire, Brower walked the first two batters he faced. Luis Gonzalez, who had been struggling against the Giants, slammed a double into the right field corner, which didn't miss to be a homerun by much, and Craig Counsell scored. Shea Hillenbrand grounded out with Alex Cintron scoring on the play, and another Dback who struggled against the Giants, Steve Finley, doubled to knock in Gonzalez, thinning the Giants' lead to 4-3.
Brower continued to struggle in the second inning and looked nothing like the Brower who was shutting down the Cardinals in his last start. With runners on first and second, Cintron singled to tie the game and to send Brower back to the dugout. Chad Zerbe entered the game, and while looking for the double play ball, got Gonzalez to hit the ball on the ground, but it found a hole to left field. Cintron scored on the play and the Dbacks took their first lead of the series. Zerbe could not erase the jam that Brower got into as Hillenbrand blooped a single to center field, driving in Gonzalez. Finley capped the four-run inning with a sacrifice fly to make the score 4-7.
The first inning for Webb seemed to have disappeared from his mind as he retired the Giants without any more trouble. All the Giants could come up with after the first inning were two base hits. On a brighter note, the Giants defense remains to be the best in the league, with some impressive stops that were made to prevent the Dbacks from breaking the game wide open, but Webb and the Dbacks' bullpen provided to be too much for the Giants' offense.
Arizona never looked back after they took the lead in the second inning as Felipe Alou played "give the bullpen playing time." He was afraid some of his bullpen guys would get rusty through the All-Star break, so Jason Christiansen, Joe Nathan, and Tim Worrell gave the Giants some time and did not give up any runs while doing it.
Game Notes: Barry Bonds' homerun streak ended today at five games... maybe he's saving them for the All-Star Game. The Giants end the first half 57-37, having the second best record in the NL and one of the top five records in the Majors. Excellent first half, guys, let's keep it up!
SFDugout.com's Players of the Game: First inning heroics from J.T. Snow and Jose Cruz, Jr. gave the Giants a positive beginning to this game. Tipped hats to Snow and Rich Aurilia for their big league defensive stops that robbed the Dbacks of a few hits. The bullpen also gave their former fellow reliever a lift, not allowing any more additional runs since their entrance in the second inning.
Sara Kwan was born in San Francisco and raised in the Bay Area. She currently writes game recaps, other articles, and is the Giant Prophet for SFDugout.com. Any comments or questions about the article, baseball, or the meaning of life can be sent to Sara at email@example.com
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