SAN FRANCISCO — When the front office put the 2019 Giants together, Wednesday’s bottom of the ninth was what everyone had in mind.
A key member of the core meshed with a key member of the future to lead the Giants to a dramatic walk-off win over the Los Angeles Dodgers. Buster Posey’s single brought Steven Duggar racing home with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, clinching a 2-1 win over the Dodgers and a necessary 2-1 series win.
“That’s a big game for us,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “It was a rough start to the homestand but it’s good to end it taking the series.”
This moment has seemingly been coming for Posey for a couple of weeks. After a slow start to the season, he started to find his swing on the last road trip, and he took the field Wednesday with a seven-game hitting streak. He extended it to end what was one of the better games of the last couple of years.
“I feel like I’ve been getting in a better position to hit and swinging at better pitches," Posey said. "Generally when you do that, good things are going to happen."
The Giants took an early lead and looked poised to ride Madison Bumgarner. But when the Dodgers tied it up, the visitors instead rode Hyun-jin Ryu through the eighth.
Duggar led off the bottom of the ninth with a single, his third of the night, off Julio Urias and reached second with two outs. It’s been a rough go for him, too, but speed never slumps, and Duggar is the only player on the roster who could have scored that winning run.
Posey reached out and yanked a 97 mph outside fastball into left. Duggar scorched his way around third.
"I felt good with Duggy on second there," Posey said.
Still, left fielder Chris Taylor has a good arm. His throw was on line.
"(First base coach) Jose Alguacil started to celebrate before he threw the ball and I was like, 'Hold on Augie, let's make sure he touches the plate first," Posey said.
Duggar did, jumping up immediately and screaming as he joined a raucous celebration. The Giants had calmed down a half-hour later, and Posey took on a somber note when pointing out that the Giants have to build on this. They can't let the feeling dissipate and then play poorly in Cincinnati, where they got swept last year.
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The Giants will worry about that over the next 48 hours. For now, Posey is focused on something else. He chased first baseman Brandon Belt out of the victory scrum but wouldn't say what Belt did to him. It probably involved a tap below the belt of some point.
"I'll get him back," Posey said.