What we learned as Giants clinch Bay Bridge Series title vs. A's originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
OAKLAND -- A collective sigh of relief could be heard from the entire Giants organization after a much-needed two-game sweep of the Oakland Athletics this weekend at the Oakland Coliseum.
It wasn't the star-studded Los Angeles Dodgers, but the Giants faced off against a red-hot A's team that could have poured salt in the wounds of a Giants team that has been free-falling out of the NL Wild Card race.
With ace Logan Webb (W, 7 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 5 K) on the mound, the Giants handled business and took care of the cross-town rivals. Here are three observations from San Francisco's 6-4 win over the A's.
Webb worked quickly through the A's order, not allowing a hit until the bottom of the fifth inning. A Vimael Machin double kickstarted a rally where Oakland scored the first of four runs in the game, an RBI single off the bat of Skye Bolt.
The series against the A's certainly was not one that should not have been taken lightly. Prior to Saturday's game, Oakland had won nine of 13 games since the All-Star break. Not to mention that the A's historically play the Giants as well as any team in the league. Both Webb and Rodón's solid outings are an encouraging sign that things could be turning around for the Giants.
A good omen
Possibly the most encouraging sign that the Giants are turning things around are the multi-home run games. These were a staple of their success throughout their franchise-best 107-win season in 2021 and an energizing force behind most of their wins under manager Gabe Kapler.
On Saturday, LaMonte Wade Jr., J.D. Davis, and Joey Bart each launched home runs to cap off a seven-run win. On Sunday, Mike Yastrzemski homered twice and Thairo Estrada once, giving the Giants back-to-back games with three home runs.
Since the All-Star break, San Francisco's power dropped off quite a bit, in part due to the slew of injuries to key veteran bats in the lineup. Now that the Giants are healthier and hitting home runs at a more familiar pace, a return to normalcy is on the horizon.
Defending their title
Sunday's win not only capped off a two-game sweep of the cross-town rivals, but it clinched the season series over Oakland, with the Giants winning three of the four matchups.
For the second straight season, Kapler and his team will be awarded the prestigious Tom Pellack Memorial Bridge Trophy, given to the winner of the Bay Bridge Series.
Regardless of what the A's record is, this series is important to both teams and there is always an added level of intensity when the two teams face one another.
The Giants still are hoping that they can turn things around in time to pursue another trophy at the end of the season, one that has seemed extremely unlikely in recent weeks.