The Giants let a fantastic opportunity slip away when they lost Game 2 of the division series against Visalia. The Oaks came from behind to win 4-2, after San Jose took a quick lead on Pat Dobson's first inning home run. Carlos Sosa would homer later in the game to put the Giants back in the lead at 2-1, but the Giants leads would not hold up.
The Oaks had power hitting and effective pitching on their side and it worked to best what the Giants could do. Visalia tied the game twice on solo home runs while their bullpen shut down the Giants hitters after a few walks and an error cost San Jose the game.
Darren Sack did not look sharp early on. He walked Fernando Perez to lead off the game and hit Chris Nowak with a pitch. Sack recovered with a strikeout and from there he held Visalia down. He did not allow a base hit until the fifth inning, when his efforts unraveled. He allowed a two out solo home run to Mark Schleicher and gave up another solo homer to Nowak in the sixth inning.
Sack’s day ended when he walked John Jaso following the home run. Alfredo Simon came on to preserve San Jose’s one run lead, and walked Josh Arhart. Sergio Pedroza hit a grounder to Dobson at first, and Jaso scored on what should have been a double play. Dobson threw to Tim Hutting to get Arhart at second base, but the Hutting threw wide to Simon covering at first. Pedroza was safe on the error charged Hutting. Visalia had their first lead of the series at 3-2.
Richard De Los Santos and Nick Debarr did not allow a base runner over four innings pitched in relief. The Oaks added an insurance run in the top of the ninth against San Jose lefty Alex Hinshaw, another two-out hit turning into a run. Josh Asanovich doubled and Patrick Cottrell brought him home with an RBI base hit to win 4-2.
Dobson continues to hit well against the Oaks, and he capitalized on Visalia starter Brian Mann’s weakness. Mann led the California League in home runs allowed in the regular season with 19, and he added two more to his record with the home runs to Dobson and Sosa.
Pedroza left the game after the Oaks scored the go-ahead run with an injured knee. Second baseman Mark Minicozzi sat out with an injury, so both teams fielded lineups slightly different from Game 1.The series moves to Visalia for Games 3 and 4. Gregorio Martinez starts for the Giants against Visalia left-hander James Houser in Game 3 at 6:35 Monday night.
Chris has been a Giants fan since her days in utero. She loves baseball and writes about whatever she can get her hands on…even the Athletics. She's a Bay Area gal through and through. This is her 24th season of fandom. Love/hate mail can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org, where the love mail gets top priority and the hate mail gets used for kindling.
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