SAN FRANCISCO – Just when it appeared their season was about to go up in smoke, the Giants pulled some even-year magic out of their black-and-orange hats.
Joe Panik’s RBI double in the 13th vaulted San Francisco to a 6-5 win over the Cubs in Game 3 of the National League Division Series at AT&T Park.
Conor Gillaspie’s two-run triple in the eighth against Aroldis Chapman looked like it would be enough to keep San Francisco’s season alive, but Kris Bryant hit a game-tying, two-run blast off closer Sergio Romo in the ninth.
Brandon Crawford, who drove in a run during the Giants’ three-run eighth, opened the 13th with a leadoff double against lefty Mike Montgomery, who was starting his fifth inning of relief.
Panik got ahead, 2-1, then socked a 92 mph fastball off the high wall in right-center, easily scoring Crawford from second to end the 5:03 marathon and keep the Giants’ season alive.
San Francisco had been down to its final six outs, trailing by a run in the eighth inning. Brandon Belt singled against lefty Travis Wood to put the tying run on base, then Buster Posey drew a walk against Hector Rondon to put runners at first and second.
Kris Bryant ties the game up in the ninth with a two-run home run to give the Cubs new life.
Not wanting to take any chances, Cubs manager Joe Maddon called on Chapman for the final six outs. But as we’re reminded time and time again, it’s not as easy as Mariano Rivera made it look for all those years.
Chapman struck out Hunter Pence with a 101 mph fastball for the first out, taking a little air out of the sellout crowd. Gillaspie, whose three-run homer off Jeurys Familia vaulted the Giants to a wild card win over the Mets last week, fouled off the first pitch he saw before crushing a 101 mph fastball to right-center, scoring both runners as he cruised into third base with a go-ahead triple.
Crawford tacked on an RBI single to give the Giants an insurance run, but it turned out not to be quite enough insurance as Romo walked Dexter Fowler to start the ninth to set up Bryant’s game-tying homer.
The two teams meet again Tuesday in Game 4 as Chicago’s John Lackey tries to close out the Giants, who counter with Matt Moore.
“From day one, we have been talking about winning the World Series,” Lackey said before the game. “That’s the goal. We want to be the last one standing, and that has not changed.”
Aroldis Chapman blows a 3-2 lead after Joe Maddon calls on the closer to get a six-out save.
(Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
For the first seven-plus innings, it looked like Jake Arrieta would be the hero, though not for what you might have expected.
Yes, he held the Giants to two runs over six innings, but it was his stunning three-run homer off Madison Bumgarner that had been the story of the game prior to the Cubs’ bullpen meltdown.
Then again, that’s how the series has gone for the Cubs, who have had six of their 11 runs driven in by pitchers (Arrieta 3, Kyle Hendricks 2, Wood 1).
Bumgarner – who hadn’t given up a run in 23 consecutive postseason innings entering the night – didn’t allow any other runs during his five innings, though it marked the first time in nine starts dating back to Game 1 of the 2012 NLCS that he’s failed to deliver a quality start.
Maddon had compared Bumgarner to the likes of Bob Gibson and Sandy Koufax on Sunday, but the Giants ace didn’t look much like either in the early innings of Game 3.
Bryant’s home run barely clears the wall and sends the game into extras.
(Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Bumgarner was already at 37 pitches in the second, having recorded only four outs to that point. He retired Miguel Montero on a line drive to right field with runners at first and second, leaving only Arrieta between him and another zero.
“The last thing any pitcher wants to do is give up a hit to another pitcher,” Bumgarner said Sunday when asked about facing Arrieta, who hit a respectable .262 with two homers this season. “You’re not going to sit there and throw three fastballs by him.”
Arrieta fell behind, 1-2, before drilling a 90 mph fastball into the left-field seats. Bumgarner turned and watched the ball leave the yard, stunned to be taken deep by a pitcher for the first time in his career.
The Cubs dugout erupted as Arrieta rounded the bases, while the sellout crowd of 43,571 got quieter than the local library.
Bumgarner limited the damage to Arrieta’s home run, but the Cubs worked his pitch count up to 68 through three innings, 85 through four and 101 through five, at which point his night was finished.
Buster Posey scores on Conor Gillaspie’s two-run go-ahead triple in the eighth.
(Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Posey woke up the crowd with an RBI single against Arrieta in the third, putting the Giants on the board.
Denard Span hit a one-out triple in the fifth, scoring on Belt’s sacrifice fly to pull the Giants within a run.
Arrieta retired the side in order in the sixth, though not without controversy. Javier Baez made an incredible play on Gillaspie’s grounder up the middle, throwing him out at first. The Giants challenged the play – video review appeared to show Anthony Rizzo’s foot come off first base – but the play stood as called, enraging the hostile crowd.
Seven innings later, the Bay Area fans were anything but hostile. Instead, they were hopeful.
Source: NY Daily News Headlines Sports News