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The offensive juggernaut San Francisco Giants (18-21) returned home from their five-game road trip to face the Arizona Diamondbacks (15-24) Friday night.

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The Giants’ hottest hitters, Brandon Belt (2-for-4, 2 RBIs) and Alex Dickerson (2-for-4) continued to swing the bat well as the Giants offense tried to rally multiple times, eventually losing 6-5.

They’ve consistently been one of baseball’s better offensive teams, but a 23-5 win over the Rockies on Tuesday made the baseball world stop and ask, ‘who are these Giants?”

This story has been updated with quotes and post-game material from the Giants clubhouse at Oracle Park.

Friday the Giants kicked off a six-game homestand. They sent lefty Tyler Anderson (L, 4 IP, 4 ER, 1 BB, 2 Ks) to the mound to face off against D-Backs righty Taylor Clarke.

Ketel Marte homered off Anderson in the top of the first inning to give the D-Backs an early lead.

The Giants answered quickly. With one out in the bottom of the first, Dickerson singled to right field. Two batters later, Belt doubled him home. Game tied at 1-1.

Nick Ahmed doubled with one out in the top of the second inning, advancing to third on a sacrifice fly. Anderson escaped, stranding Ahmed at third.

Fast forward to the third, Daulton Varsho singled to lead off the inning. Two batters later, Marte doubled him home. D-Backs take a 2-1 lead.

The Giants have been good about erasing deficits quickly. Dickerson doubled to lead off the bottom of the third, advancing to third on a ground out. Belt walked, putting runners at first and third with one out.

Wilmer Flores struck out, two down. Donovan Solano sent a ground ball back up the middle, beating the throw at first base. Dickerson scored to tie the game.

More trouble for Anderson in the top of the fourth inning. Ahmed led off with a single, followed by a double from Josh Rojas. Two batters later, the D-Backs took advantage of the scoring opportunity. Varsho singled to right, scoring both runners. D-Backs jumped out to a 4-2 lead.

Joey Bart singled up the middle to lead off the bottom of the fourth. The next batter, Mauricio Dubon, doubled down the left field line. An immediate response once again from the Giants, who trailed by a run.

Mike Yastrzemski walked, runners at first and second with nobody out. Dickerson grounded into a double play and Evan Longoria struck out. The Giants rallied for just one run.

Anderson’s night was finished. Sam Coonrod replaced him in the top of the fifth inning.

Giants manager Gabe Kapler discussed his starters short outing Friday night:

“I thought he had some moments where he knew exactly what he was doing with his fastball, changeup, utilizing his cutter, and he looked right where he wanted to be. In other cases, he over-adjusted a little bit. Sometimes it doesn’t make sense to go off the script that works really well. He’s got three good pitches that he can throw for strikes, and that is the formula for success for Tyler.”

A walk to Christian Walker led off the top of the fifth inning. Eduardo Escobar followed with a double to right, putting runners at second and third with nobody out. A deep fly out to right scored Walker.

Ahmed followed with a single, scoring Escobar. That was all for Coonrod, replaced by Andrew Suarez with one out.

Rojas reached on a double-play ball to second, beating the throw at first. A fly ball to center ended the threat. The D-Backs added on, now leading 6-3.

Flores doubled down the left-field line with one out in the bottom of the fifth. Two batters later, with two outs, Brandon Crawford singled against the shift, scoring Flores from second.

Bart flew out to end the inning. Giants got a run back, now trailing 6-4.

Dubon made his first highlight reel catch in center field in the top of the sixth inning. A leap at the wall saved an extra base hit off the bat of Varsho.

Two batters later, Marte doubled off the right-field wall. Suarez was replaced by Trevor Gott who retired the last batter.

Yastrzemski reached on an infield hit with one out in the bottom of the sixth. Dickerson walked, bringing the tying run to the plate in Longoria.

One double play ball later and the scoring opportunity came to an end.

Sam Selman replaced Gott in the top of the seventh inning, setting the D-Backs down in order.

Belt might just be the hottest hitter in the Giants lineup right now. A leadoff solo home run cut the D-Backs lead to one. Giants trail 6-5 in the bottom of the seventh.

Belt is seeing the ball very well, he’s one of the hottest hitters in the league. He talked about his success, and his ability to trust himself at the plate:

“I’ve been trying to stick with this process of trusting myself. It’s something that’s hard to do, but I’ve really put a lot of effort into it, I’ve been working on it a lot.”

Selman back out for the top of the eighth, once again retiring the side in order. Two very nice innings from the Giants rookie reliever. Giants down one with six outs remaining.

If it weren’t for a few solid innings from the bullpen Friday night, the Giants may have dug themselves into a deeper hole. Kapler discussed using his bullpen to stay in the game as best they can:

“The way we managed the bullpen tonight, we did it to try and stay in that game. We were down two runs, but we felt that we were right there. [Brandon Belt] hit the big homer that was crushed, that got us within one. We went to guys who we thought could keep us in the game. We did that because we really believe i our offense.”

Bart dropped a single in front of the left fielder to lead off the bottom of the eighth inning. Steven Duggar pinch-ran for Bart at first. Dubon followed with a shallow single to left, runners at first and second with no outs.

Shortly after Friday night’s loss, Dubon discussed his hot streak at the plate, and which one his teammates he’s been learning from:

“I’ve been talking with Brandon Belt about it a lot, just about having the right discipline and being able to drive pitches. I think that’s a big part of it, being able to swing at the pitches i can actually drive and do damage with. I just learn how to take a walk, if they’re going to walk me, and throw pitches for me to chase i’ll just take them and walk.”

Yastrzemski was hit by a pitch, loading the bases. Dickerson flew out to right, not deep enough to score Duggar from third. Instead, the throw to the plate was cut off, and a throw back to second caught Dubon too far off the bag for a double play.

Longoria grounded out, ending the Giants best scoring opportunity of the night.

Wandy Peralta on for the ninth inning. Marte reached on a throwing error from Longoria at third. Next batter, Walker, singled against the shift. Two runners on with one out.

Crisis averted, Peralta escaped without allowing any runs. Bottom of the ninth, Giants down to their final three outs.

Belt flew out to lead off the bottom of the ninth. Flores followed with a walk, pinch ran for by Daniel Robertson. Solano came to the plate and flew out to center.

Crawford to the plate as the winning run, with two outs.

A strikeout sealed the Giants fate Friday night.


Taylor Wirth

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