Most managers would not give Bonds another pitch remotely close to the strike zone, but in the bottom of the fourth, with one out and Edgardo Alfonzo on first, Bonds got anther chance, and he took full advantage. He hit his second homer of the game, putting the Giants ahead by two runs.
Schmidt pitched well but ran into some trouble in the sixth. Despite striking out Wilkerson, the pitch went through Torrealba's legs and to the backstop, allowing Wilkerson to reach. Endy Chavez then grounded into a fielder's choice, followed by a double from Jose Vidro to score Chavez.
The Giants tacked on another run in the bottom of the seventh. With one out, JT Snow walked. Then, Joey Eischen hurled a wild pickoff throw, allowing Snow to go all the way to third. Edgardo Alfonzo then flew out to right field, and Snow decided to test Terrmel Sledge's arm. Snow dashed for home plate, and Sledge's throw was in time, though slightly up the third baseline.
However, Brian Schneider never caught the ball and never even tagged Snow coming down the line. Snow was called out by home plate umpire Jerry Crawford, but then, after help from third base umpire Rob Drake, Crawford changed the call. The Giants now had a 4-2 advantage.
They would need that run. Though Schmidt came out to throw his warm up pitches in the ninth, he felt some discomfort and left the game. Scott Eyre came in and promptly walked the first batter he faced. However, he got Nick Johnson to ground into a fielder's choice.
With one out and one on, Dustin Hermanson was brought in for the fourth straight game. He wasn't quite as sharp. He gave up a double to Alex Gonzalez. Then, Brian Schneider grounded out to score Johnson from third and allowed Gonzalez to advance to third. With two out, Tony Batista singled, and Gonzalez scored to tie the game.
The game did not remain tied for long. Yorvit Torrealba walked on four straight balls to lead off the ninth. Kirk Rueter was then called to pinch hit. He laid down a bunt perfectly, and due to miscommunication between first baseman Nick Johnson and pitcher Luis Ayala, Rueter reached. Ricky Ledee was then brought in to pinch run for Rueter. Ray Durham then tried to bunt, but Batista charged hard from third and threw Torrealba out at third.
Then Snow stepped up to the plate. With two strikes on him, Snow singled. Ledee streaked around third and flew home. Right fielder Juan Rivera threw wildly, airmailing everyone and everything, and Ledee scored the winning run.
Player of the Game: Schmidt pitched admirably and Bonds launched two, but tonight's honor goes to JT Snow. In the midst of an 11-game-hitting streak, Snow has simply been on fire. Snow went 3-4, scoring one and driving in one – the game winning run. Snow is currently batting .316. His third hit of the game was simply clutch, scoring Ledee from second. (Touchdown!)
Michelle Lo, also known as the Armchair Manager, writes recaps and other miscellaneous articles and designs some of the graphics at SFDugout.com. She can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
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