Rewind: Pirates vs Giants, Game #3

The Giants are now accommodating other teams' quests for fixing holes in their batting order. This time around Rob Mackowiak got taken in for maintenance and left SBC Park with 4 home runs and 4 RBI to help vault his Pirates and finish a sweep of the Giants.

Marquis Grissom was the only Giant to put a run on the board by hitting a lead off home run in the bottom of the 4th inning.

The Giants most winning pitcher, Jerome Williams, went 5-1/3 innings giving up 9 hits and 5 earned runs. Both of Mackowiak's home runs came off his ineffective arm. The good news for the Giants' pitching staff is that out of 5 pitchers they sent to the hill, only 2 gave up any runs.

Pittsburgh's Kip Wells (3-4, 4.26ERA) got the win, giving over-worked closer Jose Mesa a much-needed day of rest. The way the Giants were swinging their bats, Brian Boehringer could have been the closer in a tight 2-1 game and he would have come out the recipient of a major league save. Instead, he just had to pitch 2 innings of uneventful ball after Wells was lifted before the 6th inning. Former Giants starter/quitter Saloman Torres and Mike Johnston followed Boehringer to finish out the game.

Bad clutch hitting is still haunting the Giants' chances of competing. Now it has seeped into their base running. During the bottom of the 5th Jerome Williams and JT Snow singled to but runners on the corners. JT Snow began what appeared to be a hit-and-run situation. He took off for 2nd base with a 3-1 count on Marquis Grissom. Grissom swung and missed, leaving Snow stranded between first and second. During all the madness Williams was inching off 3rd base not knowing what to do. Jason Kendall had throw to Bobby Hill to snare Snow, but Hill instead threw to Chris Stynes to pick off Williams.

The play, along with the flaccid batting and BP-quality pitching (Matt Herges giving up a 3-run homer in the 9th) encapsulates the reversal of fortune that has haunted the team all year. Last year the dark cloud hung over the Dodgers. This year, like so many El Nino winters, it has migrated to the city by the bay. The Dodgers, on the other hand, are living the charmed life that the Giants have been used to all these years.

Sfdugout.com players of the game: Left handed relievers Wayne Franklin and Scott Eyre. They pitched a combined 1 inning of no-hit ball and didn't give up anything. Their line score remained a big fat zero. Same could be said about the Giants bats.



Jeremy Nunes writes game recaps for SFDugout.com. He also sits up late at night trying to find a way to become a clever sports writer. He can be praised or berated at jtnunes@yahoo.com

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