It's Friday! Vance Worley faced off against Tim Lincecum tonight in a pitching match up that was compelling for, oh, about five innings. And then Worley began to nibble, Laz Diaz began to tighten up the strike zone, and in the sixth inning, the Mighty Brandon Crawford hit a meatball from Worley way out to right, burying the Phillies. Going into tonight, Crawford had hit two homers in 294 plate appearances.
It's that kind of season. Sad, rainy game was sad. Perhaps the sadness was left over from the Roger Waters concert. It sure felt like it.
Vance Worley went six innings, giving up six runs on six hits. He struck out nine, including five in a row during the second and third innings. His three walks included two that were on base for Crawford's home run. The walks resulted from Worley nibbling and from a strike zone that seemed to get smaller for both Worley and Lincecum in the fourth.
Lincecum went seven innings for the Giants in what has been a disappointing season for him, though he has shown recent signs of life. Tim the Enchanter struck out six, walked two, gave up five hits, and allowed two runs.
The Phillies nearly broke through in a big way during the fourth inning in what would be their best offensive surge of the game. Shane Victorino singled and advanced to third on a single by Chase Utley. Lincecum slipped and fell while trying to deliver a pitch, and the resulting balk allowed Victorino to head home with the Phillies' first run. Ryan Howard and Carlos Ruiz made outs, and then Hunter Pence and Juan Pierre walked to load the bases for Placido Polanco, who grounded into a fielder's choice.
Following the fizzled Phillies fourth, the Giants broke through in the fifth when Eli Whiteside doubled home Nate Schierholtz. The Phillies went quietly in the bottom of the fifth, and then all hell broke loose.
Ryan Theriot, annoying Phillies fans since last fall, led things off with a single, followed by another from Melky Cabrera. Buster Posey walked, and Pablo Sandoval hit a sac fly to put the Giants up 2 - 1. Schierholtz walked, and then Crawford belted a no doubter to right field about .0001 seconds after I exhorted Worley in the game thread to stop nibbling and to challenge Crawford. Despite a long solo home run to center by Ryan Howard in the Phillies' half of the sixth, it was over.
In garbage time, Michael Schwimer pitched a scoreless seventh, and Jeremy Horst pitched two innings, giving up two runs in the eighth.
Tomorrow's game will feature Matt Cain and Cole Hamels, unless he has been traded.
Fangraph of Dante's Inferno - Abandon all hope, ye who cheer for the Phillies: