|July 23, 2003||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
LP M. Batista (7-5) 5IP 3H 2R 0ER 0BB 5SO 0HR 2.66 ERA
The Giants came into this game with a nine game edge over Arizona in the NL West division and hoped to widen that gap by sending Jim Brower to the mound. Brower had his roughest start against the Dbacks last time at the BOB. He looked to overcome his Dbacks phantom as he took the mound against another righty, Miguel Batista.
The Dbacks' defense gave the Giants a few first inning gifts by committing two errors on the first two hitters. Ray Durham hit a hard grounder to Shea Hillenbrand that was not handled and bounced out of the glove. J.T. Snow followed with a possible double play ball hit to Craig Counsell, but the throw to Junior Spivey at second base came off the glove and rolled into right field, causing both Durham and Snow to be safe. Marquis Grissom singled to drive in Durham, and Barry Bonds grounded another possible double play ball to Hillenbrand. The Dbacks were able to get the middle runner, Grissom, out, but when Batista received the throw at first base, he never stepped on the bag. With one out and runners on first and third, Jose Cruz, Jr. hit yet another possible double play ball that was fielded cleanly by the Dbacks' defense to get Bonds out at second, but the throw was too late to get Cruz out at first. Snow scored on the play, but a big opportunity was lost as Rich Aurilia popped out to end the inning.
Brower continued to be lights out for the Dbacks and Batista did not give up any more runs after the first inning.
In the sixth inning, Batista was knocked out of the game and replaced by left-hander, Steve Randolph. Randolph gave up a lead off single to Grissom and proceeded to give up a line shot to Bonds that quickly went out of sight and landed in back of the arcade in right field to become Bonds' 645th career jack as the Giants took a 0-4 lead.
Right when the Giants looked satisfied with a four run advantage, their offense came back to life in the eighth. Mike Myers, the Dbacks' Bonds' specialist, came into the game only to give up an infield hit to Bonds. Oscar Villareal relieved Myers to give up a walk Andres Galarraga and with two outs, Aurilia fell behind in the count but drilled a single through the middle to drive in the Giants' fifth run of the game. With Yorvit Torrealba at the plate, a pitch got by catcher Rod Barajas, allowing the runners to advance to second and third. Torrealba continued his offensive tear as he drove a stake into the heart of the Dbacks by hitting a single to right center field to bring in Galarraga and Aurilia.
The Dbacks were able to muster up one run in the top of the ninth against Scott Eyre, but that was all they could get.
The Giants' bullpen took over after six innings as Brower left the game with another great performance. Jason Christiansen got three batters out in the seventh with the help of a double play ball, where Cruz made another impressive catch to rob Steve Finley of an extra base hit while Hillenbrand was rounding third base and had no chance of getting back to first base. Joe Nathan struck out the side in the eighth and Eyre ended the game to give the Giants a ten game lead in the division.
Game Notes: With 469 homeruns as a San Francisco Giant, Bonds' roundtripper ties him in first place with Willie McCovey on the all-time homerun list. Edgardo Alfonzo was sidelined again because of his injured finger from Monday's game. Giant ace, Jason Schmidt, will not be making the start in tomorrow's finale game against the Dbacks. Pac Bell had its eighteenth consecutive sell-out crowd.
SFDugout.com's Players of the Game: Jim Brower was spectacular again by shutting down the Dbacks and will make it difficult for Felipe Alou to pull him from the starting rotation once all starting pitchers are healthy again. Marquis Grissom continues to be extremely consistent as he posted two more hits and one more RBI in today's game. Yorvit Torrealba collected two RBIs as well as pick off a runner on first base and throw out a runner trying to steal second. The Giant's bullpen of Jason Christiansen, Joe Nathan, and Scott Eyre contributed more solid innings and gave up only one run.
Sara Kwan was born in San Francisco and raised in the Bay Area. She currently writes game recaps, other articles, and is the Giant Prophet for SFDugout.com. Any comments or questions about the article, baseball, or the meaning of life can be sent to Sara at firstname.lastname@example.org
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