Suddenly, the Giants can’t stop scoring.
The revelation that is San Francisco’s offense continued in Wednesday’s 7-5 win over the Padres (42-44). With the win, the Giants (39-47) completed a three-game sweep in San Diego for the first time in three years.
The Giants, who have won four straight for just the second time this season, didn’t reach the 10-run plateau, which they have hit the previous three games. But seven runs were good enough, and the Giants’ bats — anemic for much of the season’s first half — somehow outslugged a Padres lineup that had been on its own roll entering the series.
It’s an entirely different feeling, according to manager Bruce Bochy:
“It’s a great feeling. I feel good for these guys because they’re having success. We’ve had some tough games trying to score.”
A two-out rally in the sixth inning was the difference on Wednesday. Trailing 4-3 entering the frame, the Giants scored four runs off Padres reliever Luis Perdomo (L, 1-1, 3.31 ERA) with four straight two-out hits, starting with a double to the gap by Donovan Solano that scored Kevin Pillar from first. Pablo Sandoval drove in Solano, giving the Giants the lead with a routine pop-fly to center that Wil Myers never saw, letting it drop front of him.
Brandon Belt and Austin Slater followed with hits to pad San Francisco’s lead to 3 runs. The rally actually started when Pillar was hit by a pitch after he unsuccessfully tried to call timeout. Instead, he took a slow curveball to his back, getting on base. From there, the bats took over.
“I like to think it’s contagious. You see your teammates having good at-bats and being successful. That confidence wears off and we’re just trying to make it tough on the opposing pitcher.”
Giants starter Shaun Anderson allowed four runs on eight hits in four innings, chased after a solo shot by Fernando Tatis Jr. in the fourth. That put the Padres ahead 4-3 at the time.
Offense came early and often for a Giants squad that entered the game last in the National League in batting average (.230) and second-to-last in runs scored (349). They entered Wednesday with 50 extra-base hits in the last 13 games, the most in the majors. They have doubled in 24 consecutive games.
Padres pitchers left balls out over the plate the entire series. And though the Giants fell behind on Wednesday, the confidence from the first two games of the series carried over, according to Pillar:
“We’ve been putting together good at-bats. We’ve limited our strikeouts a lot in this series. It’s also nice to see guys get rewarded for hitting balls hard.”
That resulted in more loud contact. The Giants smashed back-to-back homers for the first time all season. The feat happened in the third inning courtesy of Evan Longoria (11) and Alex Dickerson (3) with two outs. Longoria, who has homered in three consecutive games, tied the game at 2-2 with a 2-run blast, and Dickerson followed that up with a line drive homer.
Don’t look now, but the Giants, despite being eight games under .500, are just 5.5 games back of the second Wild Card spot in the National League. And while the playoffs are still a far-fetched thought, young players such as Dickerson, a recent call-up who has impressed in his short time in San Francisco thus far, don’t necessarily see a rebuilding team:
“As soon as I walked in you wouldn’t know that we were having a tough season at this point. You’ve got guys who have won huge games. They come in with that confidence every day … You know they’re going to get hot in the second half.”
The Giants are off on Independence Day, and will head home for a three-game set against St. Louis starting Friday. Drew Pomeranz (2-8, 6.25 ERA) will toe the slab for San Francisco against Dakota Hudson (6-4, 3.40 ERA) for the Cardinals.
Before the game, the Giants optioned Tyler Beede to Triple-A and recalled reliever Ray Black. Beede started Tuesday’s game and earned the win. … The Giants finished a stretch of 20 games in 20 days on Wednesday, going 11-9. … Longoria is one of three Giants (Barry Bonds, Ellis Burks and Jarret Parker) since 2000 to homer four or more times in any three-game series. … Solano has a 10-game hit streak, tied for the second longest of his career.