The Giants lost right-hander Matt Cain after the third inning because of a strained right hamstring. They might have lost right-hander Santiago Casilla for much, much longer after he collapsed in apparent agony while running out a ground ball and had to be carried off the field.
At least it’s some small consolation that they didn’t get their hearts broken again in the ninth at Coors Field Wednesday night.
Brandon Crawford hit one of the Giants’ three home runs, then he and second baseman Brandon Hicks all but rode white horses while combining on a stunning double play in the eighth inning as the Giants took a 5-1 victory over the Colorado Rockies.
The double play helped out Casilla, who entered a bases-loaded, no-out situation and did well to give up just one run.
But Casilla hit for himself in the top of the ninth and went down in extreme pain as he stepped over first base. There was no immediate word on his injury, but he put no weight on his leg as he was carried off the field. If it’s an Achilles rupture, he won’t pitch again this season.
Starting pitching report
Cain was pitching well before grimacing on the mound on his last pitch of the third inning. He only allowed one baserunner on the night and that’s when his pitch struck Justin Morneau. Plate umpire Adam Hamari immediately warned both benches, even though neither side reacted as if Cain’s pitch had any intent.
In the third, Cain got knocked off his feet by D.J. LeMahieu’s line drive, which struck the pitcher’s glove. Cain scrambled to collect the ball and threw to first base for the out. He might have pulled something while reacting to the liner, but he didn’t show any sign of discomfort until his final pitch of the third struck out Charlie Blackmon.
Yusmeiro Petit once again proved valuable. He replaced Cain and threw three shutout innings, holding the Rockies to two hits and a walk while striking out two to get the victory.
At the plate
Jhoulys Chacin only allowed four hits in 5 2/3 innings, but they were all well struck.
Hunter Pence hit his fourth homer of the season in the fourth inning, Pablo Sandoval drove an opposite-field shot to left in the sixth, then Michael Morse and Hector Sanchez crushed doubles to center to knock Chacin from the game.
Crawford reached the second deck with his solo shot in the seventh off right-hander Matt Belisle, which came after he fouled off one two-strike pitch and worked the count full.
The Giants played a clean nine innings to snap a streak of five consecutive games with an error, but only officially. Hitting coach Hensley “Bam Bam” Meulens, who was subbing in the first base coaching box for Roberto Kelly, let a slow roller go through his legs.
Crawford made the play of the game. He fielded a grounder behind second base, shoveled his pass with his glove and Hicks grabbed the ball with his bare hand before throwing to complete the double play.
The Giants and Rockies conclude their three-game series at Coors Field on Thursday. Tim Hudson (4-2, 2.09 ERA) takes the mound against Rockies left-hander Jorge De La Rosa (5-3, 4.14). First pitch is scheduled for 12:10 p.m. PDT.