Bochy: 'Buster certainly came through at the right time'
Metallica performed the National Anthem before Friday's game between the Giants and Dodgers. (USA TODAY IMAGES)
SAN FRANCISCO – Barry Zito wore an orange Metallica trucker hat when he met with reporters following the Giants’ 2-1 victory Friday night.
Buster Posey said, “Yeah, I listen to ‘em” when asked if he was a fan of the iconic rock band.
Seems like everyone was having fun with Metallica Night at AT&T Park. So in that spirit, we’ll use a special format for this edition of Extra Baggs:
Let’s go with the Dodgers roster, which is lacking propellant these days. Not only did they lose cleanup hitter Adrian Gonzalez before the first pitch because of a sore neck, but they lost a second cleanup hitter when Hanley Ramirez injured his left hamstring while trying to go first to third.
For all the money they've spent, the Dodgers infield in the late innings consisted of Jerry Hairston Jr., Nick Punto, Justin Sellers and Juan Cruz.
Oh, and rookie right-hander Matt Magill will be pressed into service again to start Saturday.
FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS
It did not toll for Giants relievers who walked off the mound with runners on base. Chad Gaudin stranded Barry Zito’s runner. George Kontos stranded both of Gaudin’s runners. Santiago Casilla stranded both of Jeremy Affeldt’s runners.
“Casilla has done it a ton for me, and I haven’t even pitched that much,” said Affeldt, who just came off the disabled list.
Casilla has allowed just three of 19 inherited runners to score. Kontos has stranded nine of 11.
…AND JUSTICE FOR ALL
The Dodgers’ Nick Punto made it clear that he didn’t like umpire Joe West’s strike zone. But at least West was consistently inconsistent to both teams. When Sergio Romo threw the same pitch in the same spot with a 2-2 count to Matt Kemp, he didn’t get the call. Kemp followed with a single before Romo worked his way out of the ninth inning.
MASTER OF PUPPETS
Zito had to pull the string a few times, as the leadoff man reached in each of the six innings he started. But he got three double-play grounders, and some terrific defense from Hunter Pence (who threw out Ramirez trying to go first to third) and Brandon Belt (who threw out a runner at the plate).
“Tonight was tough for me,” Zito said. “I didn’t have my command at all. I just tried to make good pitches and I only did half or two thirds of the time.”
I’m sure Dodgers Manager Don Mattingly will love reading those comments. The Dodgers stranded 13 runners, including one in eight of nine innings.
SEEK AND DESTROY
Pence made a tremendous throw from right field. So did Matt Kemp, when he threw out Posey trying to score from second base on Pence’s single in the sixth. Outfield assists make for terrific baseball, do they not?
That’s what Carl Crawford’s pinch single nearly represented in the eighth inning. But somehow, Joaquin Arias was able to range all the way up the middle and get a glove on it. If the ball had squeaked through, Andre Ethier would’ve scored the tiebreaking run from second base. Instead, Ethier held at third and Arias made an unbelievable, off-balance throw that almost beat Crawford to first base.
This was just Arias’ first start of the season at shortstop, too. Not too shabby.
The song will always be associated with Mariano Rivera, and to a lesser extent, Billy Wagner. But it takes a backseat to “El Mechon” here at AT&T Park.
Romo got the win, though it took him 22 pitches. That isn’t a huge amount, but amazingly, it’s the most he’s thrown in an outing this season. He was appearing in his 17th game – a workload he’s been able to handle because he’s been so efficient. (His previous high was 20 pitches.)
It worked out to Romo’s benefit that Ramirez went down with an injury. He would’ve batted third against Romo in the ninth – and as both gentlemen would well remember, Ramirez took the right-hander deep twice last season.
Buster Posey was 0 for 6 with a walk and five strikeouts against Ronald Belisario.
Now he’s 1 for 7.
FADE TO BLACK
But before we do, check out video of Posey’s last walk-off hit before Friday night – a homer in the 13th inning for Single-A San Jose in 2009.
NOTHING ELSE MATTERS
Final score: Giants 2, Dodgers 1.