SAN FRANCISCO -- Derek Holland brought a small bottle of baby oil onto the field at 11:30 a.m. Wednesday morning in an effort to help get Brandon Belt into the All-Star Game. Many hours later, Holland upgraded to his walk-off Alhambra jug.
Buster Posey smacked a long single off the bricks to give the Giants a 5-4 win over the Cubs in the 13th inning on Wednesday afternoon. The game-winner, the eighth walk-off of the season for the Giants, came after hours of frustration at the plate.
The Giants scored four runs in the first and then shut it down. They had 10 baserunners from the third through the eighth, but did not score. In the meantime, the Cubs chipped away. A couple of homers in the middle innings tied the game.
The Giants got the leadoff runner on again in the ninth but could not score, but they weren't burned, in large part because of Will Smith. The closer lowered his ERA to 0.95 with two scoreless innings and Dereck Rodriguez came out of the 'pen for three scoreless innings. In the 13th, the lineup finally broke through.
Brandon Belt walked with two outs and Andrew McCutchen bounced a single into left. Posey, who handles high-velocity pitchers well, won it off hard-throwing rookie James Norwood, who was making his MLB debut.
—- Johnny Cueto was sharper than in his return, but still struggled with his command at times and pitched without his usual velocity. In five innings, he gave up three earned on six hits and three walks. HIs fastball averaged 89.4 mph.
—- Cueto appeared to hurt his right hand while taking a swing in the bottom of the fourth inning. He yelled out in pain as he left the batter’s box and was immediately checked by a trainer once he returned to the dugout. Cueto stayed in the game, but gave up a two-run homer in the top of the fifth and barely escaped. Bochy let him stay in after a four-pitch walk and rocket to the track from Javier Baez, and Cueto struck out Kyle Schwarber and got Addison Russell to line out to center.
—- Making his second start in as many days, Chase d’Arnaud hit a leadoff homer against Mike Montgomery. The shot to left was his first as a Giant. Called up Saturday, d’Arnaud likely will see the majority of the starts at second base against left-handed pitchers.
—- The Cubs tied it in the seventh when Baez took Tony Watson deep to center. Watson had not allowed a run in his previous 18 innings, the longest active streak in MLB. He had thrown 20 2/3 consecutive scoreless innings at home.