What we learned as Giants take advantage of sloppy Royals originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
SAN FRANCISCO -- It has been eight years since the Giants and Kansas City Royals squared off in the World Series, and with the exception of the (somewhat amazing) fact that Brandon Crawford and Salvador Perez were still in the starting lineups Monday, just about everything has changed.
The Giants are now into their third year of grinding opponents down under Gabe Kapler. The Royals remain deep in a rebuild that has been stalled by an inconsistent pitching staff. On Monday, that added up to a 6-2 win for the Giants.
They drew a season-high nine walks and four of them scored, and that was enough for a group of pitchers that got another solid night from Alex Wood and more steps in the right direction from the bullpen. Maurico Llovera, Jake McGee and Camilo Doval closed out the fourth straight win.
The game was knotted up until the bottom of the sixth, when Austin Slater hit for Joc Pederson against a lefty. He drew a walk, took second on a wild pitch and raced home on Thairo Estrada's hard single.
Two more walks were drawn with one out in the seventh and Brandon Crawford made the Royals pay with a double down the right field line that extended the lead to three runs.
The Best Things In Life Are Free
On the 10-year anniversary of Matt Cain's perfect game, it looked like the Giants were going to honor him by going nine up, nine down. But No. 9 hitter Austin Wynns poked one down the line for a double with two outs in the third and then things got weird.
Brady Singer had walked just four batters in his first 38 1/3 innings, but he gave free passes to four consecutive Giants, starting with leadoff hitter Luis Gonzalez. That pushed two runs across and brought Crawford up with the bags juiced, but his liner to center ended the rally.
Singer seemed stunned by the lack of command -- most of the misses weren't close -- and the Royals' bench just about froze. The Giants tied the game 2-2 with the walk-fueled rally as Singer threw 36 pitches in the inning, 23 of which were balls.
The Old Jake
When McGee went on the IL last month, he was carrying a 9.58 ERA and having trouble locating his bread-and-butter fastball. One quick adjustment later, he's back and looking like the guy who served as closer for most of last season.
McGee gave up a leadoff infield single and then quickly got out of the eighth, getting the ball to Doval. In seven appearances since returning to the active roster, McGee has allowed just two hits and no runs. Monday's appearance was just like many of last season's; McGee threw eight pitches, all fastballs, and averaged nearly 96 mph in the scoreless frame.
Getting In Gear
Through his first 10 starts this season, Wood never completed six innings. He has now done it twice on this homestand.
Five days after he threw seven strong against the Colorado Rockies, Wood allowed just four hits and two earned runs in six innings. He walked one and struck out five.
Wood threw only 80 pitches but the Giants had a lengthy bottom of the sixth and Maurico Llovera took over for the top of the seventh.