The Rockies, however, weren't satisfied with their first inning offensive barrage. They struck again in the second, stringing together a single, a sacrifice bunt, and a double to extend their lead over the Giants to six runs.
The Giants answered back with three in the third against starter Aaron Cook. Dustan Mohr got on base with a free pass and was immediately sacrificed over to second base. Ray Durham followed, working another walk to put runners at first and second with only one out. Deivi Cruz then smoked Cook's 2-1 offering into the left center field gap, and Mohr scurried home to score the Giants' first run of the game. Up next was JT Snow, who, with excellent career numbers against Cook, tomahawked a 3-1 pitch deep into the right center field alley for a double, bringing in Durham and sending Cruz to third base. After Edgardo Alfonzo walked, AJ Pierzynski hit an RBI groundout to complete the scoring for the Giants in the third. After three, the score stood at 6-3 in favor of Colorado.
The Giants inched closer in the bottom of the fourth on a two-out single by Durham. Durham advanced to second base on an error by Wilson in center field, but he was stranded there when Cruz grounded out to end the inning.
Tomko, meanwhile, had settled down allowing only two hits and no runs after the first two innings, but his pitch count booted him from the game after six. Southpaw Wayne Franklin took over in the seventh and threw two perfect innings against the meat of the Rockies' order. Similarly, Jeff Fassero contributed three scoreless innings of his own out of the Colorado bullpen, entering the game in the sixth in relief of Cook.
Neither team could push a run across until the ninth inning, when the Rockies added a run off of Tyler Walker. A bloop hit, an infield single, and a seeing-eye ground ball to the outfield spelled out insurance for Colorado as they stretched their lead to three runs.
The Giants, only a half game up on the second-place San Diego Padres in the National League West, headed to the ninth in need of four runs to ensure that their position at the top of their division would remain intact. They could not come through, able to muster only a single in the inning against Colorado closer and gas can Shawn Chacon.
Players of the Game: JT Snow and Wayne Franklin. Snow was an early offensive spark plug for the Giants with two loud base hits and an RBI; he also played his usual gold glove defense at first base. Franklin quieted the Rockies' bats in his two stellar innings of work, retiring the side in order in both the seventh and eighth innings.
Stephanie Moy is a diehard Giants fan, born and raised in the city by the bay. She welcomes comments, questions, criticism and praise at email@example.com.
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