What we learned as Giants suffer disappointing loss to Tigers originally appeared on NBC Sports Bayarea
SAN FRANCISCO -- The easiest homestand of the season continues to be a huge disappointment.
The Giants wasted a couple of golden opportunities against the Detroit Tigers on Wednesday, losing 3-2 to fall to 2-3 on a homestand that features some of MLB's worst teams. After losing two of three to the Cincinnati Reds, they split with the Tigers, who were visiting Oracle Park for the first time in a decade.
It has been a frustrating offensive stretch for the lineup, and that continued Wednesday. The Giants could not have asked for better luck than what they got in the third inning and the seventh, but they totaled just one run.
In the third, Javier Baez had a hard single go off his glove and another die in front of him when Evan Longoria's broken bat flew all the way out to shortstop, getting in the shortstop's way.
That loaded the bases for Joc Pederson and Brandon Belt, but the Giants didn't score.
Four innings later, the Giants had a rally that consisted of two walks, two bloops with a combined hit probability of 11 percent, and a grounder that wasn't hit hard enough for an inning-ending double play. They scored just one run, leaving the bases loaded when Austin Slater struck out.
Evan Longoria entered the day with an OPS+ of 124, his highest since 2016. He ticked that upward on Wednesday, but he has gotten to the strong numbers in a very strange way.
Longoria started the year on the IL and didn't debut until May 11. He had just two extra-base hits in his first 11 games back, but he homered twice on May 25 and ended up going deep five times over a span of five games. Then came another cold stretch, with a .208 average and no homers over his next 19 games.
Longoria started to take better swings in Atlanta last week and his oppo homer in the first inning Wednesday gave him three in five games on this homestand.
He has been streaky, but if he keeps this up it'll be the most productive season of his Giants tenure.
Alex Wood was coming off the shortest non-injury-related start of his career, and he was one pitch away from leaving Wednesday's game with a good line score. Wood stranded a leadoff double in the first, struck out the side on 11 pitches in the second, and allowed just one hit to six strikeouts through three innings.
But the Tigers got a run in the fourth and took the lead in the sixth. After a pair of singles, Wood induced a double play. Manager Gabe Kapler came out for a visit but he turned around before he could really even say anything. Wood wanted Eric Haase, but the catcher turned on a low slider and launched a two-run shot into the first row of seats in left.
Wood was charged with three earned runs in 5 2/3 innings. A very good day ended up as a below-average one in the box score because of one swing.
Welcome Back, Wade
LaMonte Wade Jr. was activated on Wednesday morning, with the Giants optioning Yermin Mercedes back to Triple-A as expected. Wade hit leadoff and started in right, going 1-for-5 with a strikeout.
The Giants surely didn't want Wade to hit in the ninth against a lefty closer touching 100 mph, but they had used all of their right-handed bats already.