With a losing streak that reached eight games Saturday – and twelve-of-thirteen – the relative highlights for the Colorado are few and far between at this point.
Unable to score in the first inning once again, playing a majority of the game from behind, an adequate performance from starting pitcher Kyle Freeland was far from enough as the offense continued to struggled in innings two-through-nine.
Freeland let the leadoff hitter reach base in his first four innings of work, but he’d get an inning-ending double play in the first and work around two base runners in the second and fourth inning.
Freeland did not escape harm in the third when back-to-back singles were followed up by a Yangervis Solarte sacrifice bunt and a Kevin Pillar sacrifice fly. Buster Posey would record his first RBI on the season with a double and the Giants would go ahead 2-0 and never look back.
In the fifth, Kevin Pillar would deposit a Freeland curveball into the right field stands for his fourth home run in his eleventh game with the Giants.
Freeland would exit the game after the fifth with an apparent blister on the middle finger of his pitching hand, forcing the bullpen to come in much earlier than manager Bud Black would have liked after last night’s 18-inning affair.
For the offense, it was another challenge to push runs across the plate and facing the tough-nosed Madison Bumgarner made it a battle through 7+ innings.
With runs at a premium, the Rockies were aggressive on the bath paths.
Trevor Story was thrown out at third trying to advance on an Ian Desmond ground out, creating an unorthodox 1-3-5 double play.
In the sixth, Charlie Blackmon was waved home by third base coach Stu Cole on Garrett Hampson’s double to left field to put the Rockies on the board. Arenado was called out on strikes to end the inning with a pitch clearly off the inside of the plate, a harrowing repeat of Friday night’s umpiring.
One inning later, Mark Reynolds tagged his second homer of the season 367 ft to left off Bumgarner to reduce Colorado’s deficit to one run.
Threatening in the eighth, Chris Iannetta roped a leadoff doubled and Giants’ manager Bruce Bochy removed Bumgarner in favor of his depleted bullpen.
Reliever Reyes Moronta inherited the runner at second and responded by striking out Raimel Tapia, Blackmon and Hampson, giving the Rockies an 0-for-4 day with runners in scoring position.
Not to be overlooked, Bryan Shaw threw two scoreless innings and lowered his season ERA to 0.87.
Seunghwan Oh struck out the leadoff hitter in the eighth, but Pablo Sandoval reaches first on a wild pitch that got past Iannetta. A single from Joe Panik and a walk to Brandon Belt was enough for Black to see.
Mike Dunn gave up consecutive sacrifice flies to Parra and Steven Duggar that put up the Giants 5-2 by the end of the eighth.
Colorado looks to snap the skid with German Márquez against San Francisco’s Derek Holland on Sunday at 2:05 MST.
Kyle Freeland – 5 IP, 9 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 5 K, 1 HR
Bryan Shaw – 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 K
Seunghwan Oh – 0.0 IP, 1 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 1 BB, 1 K
Mike Dunn – 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K
Charlie Blackmon – 1-4, 1 R, 2 SO, 2 LOB
Garrett Hampson – 1-4, 2B, RBI, SO, 2 LOB
Trevor Story – 1-4, 1 LOB
Mark Reynolds – 1-4, HR, R, RBI, SO, 1 LOB
Chris Iannetta – 2-3, 2B, 1 SO