Watson, Giants blow late lead in one-run loss to A's

Watson, Giants blow late lead in one-run loss to A's

SAN FRANCISCO — Tony Watson picked a bad night to have a bad night. 

With the Giants riding momentum into the late innings Saturday, Watson gave up a two-run shot to Oakland’s Mark Canha. The blast, which landed two-thirds of the way up the left field bleachers on a cold and foggy night, was the difference. 

The Giants lost 4-3 on the second night of the Bay Bridge Series. They tried to make a comeback off unhittable closer Blake Treinen in the ninth, getting a pair of two-out walks, but Brandon Crawford struck out to end the game. The teams have split the first two games of this six-game series. Here's what you need to know... 

—- Jeff Samardzija is clearly still not right. His fastball maxed out at 92.5 mph and averaged 90 mph, a big step down from his return from the disabled list. Of the 55 pitches Samardzija threw in four innings, only 29 were strikes. The Giants and Samardzija claim his shoulder is fine. That’s hard to believe when watching him pitch. 

—- The Giants have a decision to make. After Samardzija’s rough start, Derek Holland entered and struck out the first five A’s he faced. Holland ended up pitching two shutout innings, with eight swinging strikes. Samardzija got three swinging strikes in his four innings. 

—- With two on and no outs in the second, Dustin Fowler hit a liner to left-center that’s a two-run double at just about any point over the past five years. But Steven Duggar is now in center field, and he easily chased the ball down in the gap. The play had a catch probability of just 32 percent. 

—- Ray Black was as nasty as it gets while stranding two in the seventh. He hit 100 mph to Khris Davis and then struck him out with an 87 mph slider. Matt Chapman also went down on the slider, one pitch after waving at a fastball that clocked in at 100.8 mph. 

—- Yusmeiro Petit: 2 2/3 relief innings, 2 hits, 0 runs, 3 strikeouts. Some things never change.

Source: Giants planning to call up slugging third baseman Zach Green

Source: Giants planning to call up slugging third baseman Zach Green

SAN FRANCISCO — Conner Menez won’t be the only newcomer in the clubhouse on Sunday.

The Giants plan to call up power-hitting third baseman Zach Green from Triple-A, NBC Sports Bay Area has learned. Green has 23 homers for the River Cats this season with an OPS of 1.099. 

Green, a 25-year-old Sacramento native, was taken in the third round of the 2012 draft by the Phillies. He put up good numbers in their system, hitting 20 homers a year ago, but never got his shot and signed with the Giants over the offseason. He was in big league camp this year as a non-roster invitee.

Green has shown his power throughout the minor league season but was blocked at the big league level because he is primarily a first and third baseman. It’s unclear what his immediate role is, but Evan Longoria is out at least a couple more weeks with a left foot strain. The Giants have been concerned about wearing Pablo Sandoval down, although they do also have Donovan Solano as an option. It's possible Solano will see more time at second base.

[RELATED: Giants' loss a 'bump in the road']

Green could make his MLB debut with Menez on Sunday. The lefty will take Drew Pomeranz’s rotation spot. Menez is also a local, having grown up in Hollister. 

Giants' 11-4 loss to Mets 'a bump in the road,' Bruce Bochy believes


Giants' 11-4 loss to Mets 'a bump in the road,' Bruce Bochy believes

All good things must come to an end.

The Giants' seven-game winning streak? Good, but over.

The New York Mets hit four long homers on Saturday, handing the Giants an 11-4 loss in front of the home crowd at Oracle Park.

Starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija couldn't keep the momentum going as he gave up six hits and four earned runs over five innings. He did strike out seven Mets batters, though.

"A tick off as we were as a team," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said of Samardzija to reporters after the game. "We didn't swing the bats like we had been, so just a little off. It was just one of those days where they had their day and it was a tough day for us."

The Giants came out of the All-Star break on fire, winning eight of their first nine games. They swept a four-game series in Colorado and had won the first two games against the Mets in walk-off fashion. But the bats couldn't get going against New York starter Walker Lockett, who allowed just one earned run in five innings.

"You're going to have days," Bochy said. "We've been playing so well and had a bump in the road here. That's how we have to look at it. Regroup and come out and be ready to go tomorrow."

Bochy was asked if the Giants' recent schedule had something to do with Saturday's lackluster performance.

"It probably looked [like] it today," Bochy said. "It's been a tough schedule for these guys and not taking away from Lockett. He threw the ball well and we had a hard time figuring him out. When you look at this past week, four games in Colorado, 16 innings, but Pablo [Sandoval] went out there and swung it well today, he's been out there almost every inning. [Brandon] Belt, he got a couple hits.

"But it's going to look that way when you don't swing the bats. We're going to have a game like this. But we gotta keep going, keep grinding. We're playing well and this one was just not a good game for us."

[RELATED: Giants reportedly had scouts at Cubs game]

The Giants have a chance on Sunday to erase the bitter taste of this defeat. Left-handed pitcher Conner Menez will make his major league debut Sunday, taking the place of Drew Pomeranz in the rotation. In 18 appearances (17 starts) between Double-A Richmond and Triple-A Sacramento this season, Menez has a 3.13 ERA and has struck out 123 batters in 95 innings.