The Padres held their two run lead until the top of the fourth when it all fell apart for Brian Lawrence. He had breezed through the first three innings, but could only get one out in the fourth. Marquis Grissom and AJ Pierzynski both singled. Grissom scored when Deivi Cruz hit a single of his own. Jason Schmidt then bunted, allowing Pierzynski and Cruz to advance. Pierzynski scored when Durham singled. With runners on first and third, Tucker singled too, plating Cruz. The crushing blow finally came off the bat of Edgardo Alfonzo, a double, scoring Durham and Tucker. Barry Bonds was then promptly walked intentionally. After JT Snow struck out, Grissom singled again, capping off the six-run inning.
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The Giants answered right back. With two out, Ray Durham doubled and scored on Tucker's single.
The seven runs would be all the Giants would score, and they would make every one count. Jason Schmidt ended up allowing four runs. In the bottom of the six, he gave up a homerun to Ramon Hernandez. All told, Schmidt went six, walking more than he struck out, a rarity for the ace.
Scott Eyre and Jim Brower combined to pitch the seventh and the eighth. Eyre only managed one out, getting slightly luckless when Phil Nevin dumped a single down the right field line, inches fair. After walking Ryan Klesko to load the bases, Jim Brower came in. After getting the first out, Brower crossed up catcher AJ Pierzynski, throwing a fastball instead of a breaking ball, handcuffing the catcher. The ball rolled away, allowing Giles from third to score.
Brower shut the Padres down in the eighth, and Dustin Hermanson came in for the ninth. Mark Loretta greeted him with a single right up the middle. Brian Giles, the potential tying run, walked. However, Nevin fouled out on the first pitch he saw. Hermanson then got Klesko looking, throwing three sliders in a row. With two down, ex-Giant Rich Aurilia came up to bat. Aurilia hit it sharply down the third base line, but Pedro Feliz, who stayed in the game after a pinch hit appearance in the eighth, was playing by the line and easily fielded the grounder and stepped on the third base bag for the final out of the game.
Player of the Game: Ray Durham had his first five-hit game of his career, and every one contributed to the Giants win. Also, he stole a base. The Giants really need Durham to be hot these last few games, so it is great to see Durham get so many hits. Jason Schmidt pitched well, despite not having all his stuff and any control. He kept the team in the game. Also, Dustin Hermanson's performance was clutch. Despite getting himself into a hole, Hermanson came through, spotting all his pitches to notch his fifteenth save of the year.
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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