Rewind: Rockies vs Giants, Game #3

The Giants were looking for Kirk Rueter to continue pitching well so they could get out of their four game funk. Rueter delievered, giving his team 6 1/3 innings, giving up five hits and three runs. The Giants bullpen didn't let the lead slip away as they did last night. The Giants are now half a game behind both the Padres and Dodgers, who are tied for first. They are also half a game behind in the wildcard race, where the Dodgers, Padres, and Cubs have a three-way tie.

The Rockies drew first blood in the second, with consecutive two-out doubles by Matt Holliday and Jeromy Burnitz giving them their first run. On the first pitch in the bottom of the inning, Barry Bonds hit a solo shot to tie things up. With one out, A.J. Pierzynski hit a single and Marquis Grissom got on base with an infield hit, but Neifi Perez hit a line drive right to Rockies' second baseman Aaron Miles, who promptly stepped on second to get Pierzynski out for a double play.

Rueter helped himself out by leading off the third with a single, and with one out Deivi Cruz singled, moving Rueter up to second. With two down, Barry Bonds was intentionally walked to load the bases for Pedro Feliz. Feliz blasted a double to deep left, scoring both Rueter and Cruz and moving Bonds to third. Pierzynski hit a single to right to bring Bonds home, but Pedro Feliz got out trying to score. The Giants left the inning with a comfortable 4-1 lead.

The score remained 4-1 until the sixth, when with one out, Neifi Perez was walked. The Giants put the hit-and-run on and Kirk Rueter grounded out, moving Perez to second. Michael Tucker singled to right to bring in Feliz.

In the seventh, the Rockies began to close the 5-1 gap. With one out, Burnitz doubled to right. Todd Greene homered to left-center to bring the score to 5-3. This was Rueter's exit cue. Tyler Walker got the next two batters out to get out of the inning with no further damage.

The Giants added some insurance in the bottom half of the inning. J.T. Snow walked, and Bonds singled, moving Snow all the way to third. Feliz hit a single to left to drive in Snow for his third and final RBI of the game. Pierzynski grounded to first, moving the runners to second and third for Marquis Grissom. Grissom singled to left, driving in Bonds, and Neifi Perez lined out to Jeromy Burnitz to get Snow to score and give the Giants a solid 8-3 leader.

Luis Gonzalez led off the eighth inning with a home run to bring the Rockies a bit closer, and Scott Eyre relieved Tyler Walker. However, the Giants bullpen remained solid for the rest of the game, not giving up another run and giving Rueter the win he deserved.

Player of the Game: Pedro Feliz. He did a lot in this game and was definitely the big offensive force in the lineup tonight. Honorable mention goes to Jim Brower, who pitched the final 1 2/3 innings of the game without giving up a single hit.

Notes: The Giants bullpen held the lead tonight, allowing the Giants to salvage one game of the series. Barry Bonds scored three times, having been walked twice. Every one of the Giants nine starting players made it on base safely. J.T. Snow was the only one to not get a hit, going to 0-4 with one walk.



Jesse Radin writes for SFDugout.com and has been a Giants follower since 1996. The Blind Observer is Jesse's column covering all things baseball, though mainly about the Giants. Questions or comments can be sent to electricbassguy@hotmail.com

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