The Giants waited a long time to get back on the baseball field. They then waited a long time for Saturday’s game to end. It was well worth it.
Andrew McCutchen’s sixth hit of the day was a three-run walk-off homer in the bottom of the 14th, giving the Giants a thrilling 7-5 win over the rival Dodgers in a game that lasted more than five hours.
The Giants had fallen behind in the top of the inning but Kelby Tomlinson and Joe Panik singled to set the stage in the bottom. McCutchen made his first homer as a Giant a memorable one.
The final flourish came after plenty of drama-filled innings at AT&T Park. After a couple of short outings from the starters and some early bullpen trouble, the relievers took over. The best chances came late. The Dodgers loaded the bases in the top of the 12th and the Giants got the winning run to third with one out in the bottom of the frame, but both bullpens charged on. McCutchen finally sent everyone home.
Best game in orange and black
By the fifth inning, McCutchen had more hits than he totaled in the first six games of the season. He entered just 2-for-24, but lashed an RBI double to left in the first and hit hard singles up the middle in his next two at-bats. In the seventh, McCutchen reached with an infield single to third. He tied his career-high with a fifth hit in the 12th. You know about the 14th.
Buster Posey’s power has tailed off each of the last two seasons after the break, so it’s been a while since we’ve seen this. Posey’s two-run shot in the fourth was his first since last August 8. It was just his second home run at AT&T Park since May 15, 2017.
Third time not the charm
The Giants should probably be more mindful of the third-time-through thing with Chris Stratton. He allowed a single and a walk to open the sixth before giving way to Josh Osich. The game was tied soon thereafter. The sample size is still small, but coming into the day, opposing hitters had a .773 OPS against Stratton the third time through the lineup, as opposed to .689 the first time and .723 the second time.
Utley being Utley
Chase Utley’s career numbers against the Giants aren’t overwhelming, but it feels like he never fails to get to them in big spots these days. Utley hit a solo shot off Sam Dyson to lead off the seventh, tying the game. Earlier, he doubled and scored the first Dodger run. Saturday’s game was Utley's 100th career start against the Giants, and he’s sure to make many more.
The top of the 12th might have been the most interesting inning of the season. Reyes Moronta walked one and gave up a single while also making Yasiel Puig look silly with sliders and blowing a fastball past Cody Bellinger. The Dodgers pinch-hit Hyun-jin Ryu after an intentional walk loaded the bases, and Moronta struck him out, too.