Seven-Word Game Summary: The offense couldn't recover from wobbly pitching.
The Skinny: The Giants find themselves in an unusual predicament. In 2011, it didn't matter how well a starter pitched, the offense was only capable of dredging up two hits -- maybe -- during the course of a game, runs optional.
Judging from the first two 2012 Giants games -- and losses -- hits and runs don't seem to be the problem. The pitching seems to be the problem. Or maybe it's just that the Diamondbacks have gotten into the Giants' heads.
Either way, it's down to Matt Cain in the third game of the Giants vs. Diamondbacks series to get this team back on track. The offense is there. If Cain can, a) keep the Snakes from scoring in the first few innings, and b) last beyond the sixth inning, which is longer than either Lincecum or Bumgarner did in the first two games of this season, he'll be more than worth the price of his omg-five-year-contract -- he'll be a hero. And he'll be able to thumb his nose at every person who thought that his new contract was worth less than the paper it was signed on.
The 2012 Giants offense is good, but it's a Slow Burn offense. These guys fancy waiting until the fourth inning or so to get their bats on. That's all well and good, but only if they've got a pitcher who can keep the enemy at bay long enough for the late-blooming runs to mean something. From everything we've seen in the past from these Giants pitchers, there's no reason to believe they can't.
The Game, by the Numbers:
2: The number of home runs hit by the Giants. The first was spiked by Pablo Sandoval in the fourth inning, the second by Brett Pill in the seventh. Both were two-run homers.
97: The mph speed of one of Santiago Casilla's fast balls in the bottom of the seventh inning. Damn.
0: The number of hits Buster Posey had in this game. Again, damn, just with a different definition and emphasis.
6: The number of hits the Giants, as a team, had during this game. Sure, we got only four runs, but six hits would have seemed like striking the Mother Lode in 2011.
MadBum: Bumgarner had a rough start to 2012. He gave up two runs -- one on a home run -- to Aaron Hill in the first inning, and only got out of the mess after 32 total pitches. His second inning wasn't stellar either, considering he gave up another home run to Aaron Hill. By the end of the fourth inning, Bum had racked up 80 pitches. He was replaced in the fifth inning by Dan Otero, making this two 2012 games in a row that a Giants starter hasn't made it past the sixth inning.
Player O'The Game: Brandon Crawford. Sure, he didn't hit a home run like Sandoval or Pill, but his consistent awesomeness at short stop has quietly prevented more hits and runs than the Giants could stomach right now. Huzzah to the B. Craw.
The end of the Giants vs. Diamondbacks series is tomorrow, April 8, at 1:10 p.m. This final game of the series features Matt Cain against the Arizona Diamondbacks' Josh Collmenter.