The Giants rediscovered the win column with a sweep-avoiding 8-5 victory over Milwaukee Sunday at AT&T Park.
Andrew Suárez (W, 4-6, 4.11 ERA) didn’t have his best stuff, battling through six innings while giving up four earned runs on eight hits. However, the offense had his back, busting out of a two-game slump in a big way, and helping Suárez get his first win in exactly one month.
Although it wasn’t the type of outing the Giants have become accustomed to from the rookie, Suárez was still optimistic following his performance:
“Glove-side command wasn’t really good, but I had my sinker working. My curveball and changeup were pretty good. I don’t think my slider or fastball worked that good.”
The offensive production was highlighted by a Buster Posey three-run double in the third, a Gorkys Hernández solo homer (12) in the fourth, and Pablo Sandoval’s two-run triple in the fifth. In all, San Francisco (53-54) hung eight runs on the Brewers (61-47) in the span of just three innings. Five to the record of starter Junior Guerra (L, 6-7, 3.43 ERA), who allowed five hits and three walks in his four innings of work, and the other three off reliever Matt Albers in just 1/3 of an inning.
The Giants had struggled with runners in scoring position during the first three games of this series (4-for-21, .190 BA). The San Francisco offense collected three hits in eight such at-bats Sunday, and further maximized production scoring on a pair of sacrifice flies.
Interim manager Hensley Meulens, filling in for skipper Bruce Bochy who was in Cooperstown, New York for the Hall-of-Fame induction of Trevor Hoffman who he managed for 12 years in San Diego, felt like the team needed an offensive outburst like this:
“It was really nice to see these guys put some runs on the board, so we can break that spell, that slide we were on.”
Posey had a monster performance, going 4-for-5 with three RBIs and two runs scored, and Evan Longoria tallied his first RBI in his fourth game back from the disabled list, recording a hit, a walk and a run as well.
“You never wanna see one of your teammates go down, but to come in and be able to contribute was awesome. I’m glad we got a lot of runs for Andy, ’cause that hasn’t really been the M.O. lately for us. It was nice to break out of that and get some runs, and win a ball game.”
Aside from a Travis Shaw solo homer (20) in the seventh off of Sam Dyson, the Giants bullpen held the Brewers in check. Tony Watson pitched a clean eighth and Will Smith (S, 5, 1.41 ERA) picked up the save against his former team.
The win also gave Bochy 1,906 career managerial wins, passing Hall of Famer Casey Stengel for 11th on the all-time list. Meulens was happy for his skipper:
“Too bad he wasn’t here to see it himself, but I guess being at the Hall of Fame isn’t a bad place to be either.”
The Giants will begin a two-game series in San Diego tomorrow night, with Derek Holland (5-8, 3.92 ERA) making his third start of the month. Holland is seeking a positive ending to a strong July, in which he hasn’t allowed more than three earned runs in any appearance, as a starter or reliever. He will be opposed by fellow southpaw Eric Lauer (5-7, 5.29 ERA).
Andrew McCutchen left the game in the eighth due to a foot contusion, resulting from a fouled ball off his foot. … Pablo Sandoval exited after the fifth inning suffering a right hamstring injury:
“When I slid into home plate [on Steven Duggar’s sac fly] I felt something. It was not in the running [for the triple].”