San Francisco – The Miami Marlins first baseman Jesus Aguilar lined a rocket to left-center off San Francisco Giants reliever Gregory Santos to spark Miami’s late rally in their 5-2 win over the Giants tonight at Oracle Park despite a stellar effort by San Francisco’s starter Kevin Gausman.
The loss for the Giants marks just their second home loss of the season.
Miami went off on San Francisco’s bullpen in the ninth inning after Gausman left the game. After Aguilar’s homer, Corey Dickerson tripled to right-center to score in Garrett Cooper. Jon Berti hit a sacrifice fly to right to score in Dickerson on the next at-bat to cap the Marlins four-run ninth inning.
Mike Yastrzemski launched a homer into outside the ballpark with one out in the ninth, his fourth homer of the year, to make it 5-2 but that was the lone highlight by the Giants lineup for the night.
San Francisco’s lineup was stymied by Marlins starter Pablo Lopez, who like Gausman, had himself a very strong outing on the mound. Lopez went six innings, striking out seven while allowing just two hits with a run and walk each.
“I think Pablo Lopez did a great job over there too,” Gausman said. “You know, it was really a pitchers’ duel, you know, until the seventh inning. You gotta give him credit. His changeup was really nasty tonight, and I just think our guys had a hard time. He was really throwing good quality pitches.”
The late rally by the Marlins comes after a strong outing by Gausman, who entered Saturday’s game after tossing six scoreless innings against the Phillies on Monday for his first win of the season. Gausman pitched eight innings, throwing 11 strikeouts to tie his career-high. He allowed just a pair of hits with a run and a walk on 101 pitches.
“The loss is super tough,” said Giants manager Gabe Kapler. “Gausman was ripping his split, getting his swings and misses, and executing with his fastball. He did everything he could possibly do. It’s disappointing to not get the win for him.”
The eight-inning outing by Gausman was the fifth-time in as many starts this season that he pitched over six innings.
“I take a lot of pride in pitching deep in games,” Gausman said. “I take the ball every fifth day and when I can I try to go deep in the game.
I’ve had a lot of outings this year that I’ve got some quick outs, and some innings have kind of saved me, you know, and haven’t had many innings that have been over 20 pitches. You kind of keep doing that and keep yourself in the game a little bit longer.”
Gausman stretched his quick scoreless streak to 12.2 innings on the night until Marlins third baseman Berti took him deep on an 0-1 pitch with two outs in the top of the seventh inning to tie the game at one. He retired the first 13 batters on the day before Dickerson hit a single to right off of him with one out in the fifth.
Gausman had some help from the defense behind him in the early innings. Center fielder Austin Slater robbed Garrett Cooper of a home run to center field in the second inning and Tommy La Stella turned a diving stop at second into a highlight throw for the final out of the fourth inning.
“Yeah, I mean, that was huge,” Gausman explained. “From a momentum standpoint to just go out there and make that play was huge. And then, for Tommy to be pretty much behind second base and then run over and make that play, and stick with it and get up and make a good throw, that was huge.
Those are the types of plays that you see when a pitcher really does something special and I’m not gonna lie, in the back of my mind I was like, usually when you get those plays, there’s some good stuff that happens. So I was just trying to keep making pitches.”
The Giants had their biggest chance in the fifth inning, Slater’s sacrifice groundout to third advanced catcher Buster Posey to third base, but shortstop Mauricio Dubon lined to shortstop Jazz Chisholm, who caught Posey leading too far off of third to end the inning on the double play.
Before Yastrzemski’s homer in the ninth, San Francisco saw just two batters reach base from the sixth through the eighth inning. Brandon Belt doubled in the Giants ninth inning attempt at a rally with two outs, but Alex Dickerson flew out to left to end the game.
“The one thing that I think is notable is we put a good push there at the end,” said Kapler. “It was an opportunity for us to kind of just be done but we didn’t do that. We fought and didn’t bow at the end. So I think that was promising.”
The Giants will look to bounce back and take the weekend series in Sunday’s finale, set for a 1:05 p.m. Logan Webb (0-1, 5.87 ERA) will take the mound for San Francisco.
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