Whenever the Dodgers and Giants play against each other anything can happen. Saturday's game will make headline news for the Giants batting out of order in the opening frame, but Bruce Bochy's club overcame the mental lapse and won 4-2.
In the bottom of the first inning Buster Posey hit a RBI double, giving San Francisco a 1-0 lead. However, Dodgers skipper Don Mattingly protested the play because Posey hit in the three spot instead of cleanup. Despite Pablo Sandoval not making a plate appearance, he was ruled out. Therefore, Posey came to the dish twice in a row, and flew out in the second attempt. After correctly utilizing rule 607-B, the run was erased. Fox announcers Joe Buck and Tim McCarver were shocked, and admitted they have never seen a similar scenario.
The Giants first two runs scored occurred without a ball leaving the infield. McCarver said "What a bizarre start to this game." Later in the bottom of the second -- Marco Scutaro extended the lead to 3-0 via a sacrifice fly.
Beyond the chaos, Madison Bumgarner controlled the game on the mound and at the plate. Bumgarner hadn't allowed a base runner through 4 2/3 innings, and ended up posting seven innings of two run ball and nine strikeouts. Andre Ethier's bloop single in the fifth broke up the perfect game, and then Tim Federowicz immediately followed it up with a two run home run, cutting the deficit to 4-2. In addition to the dominant pitching, Bumgarner accumulated two RBI.
Three defensive blunders by the Dodgers turned into three unearned runs, skewing Stephen Fife's stat line. Nick Punto, Hanley Ramirez, Federowicz were responsible for the errors. Fife only lasted 73 pitches and 4 1/3 innings, while allowing one earned run.
Sandoval and Posey hit back-to-back singles to start the top of fifth, yet reliever JP Howell and second baseman Mark Ellis extinguished the fire. Howell was able to get out of the jam unscathed by striking out Brandon Belt. Ellis also helped the cause by showing off his great glove and underrated range.
The heart of the Dodgers lineup (two-five) deserves the blame for loss. Yasiel Puig, Ramirez, Adrian Gonzalez and Juan Uribe combined to go 1-for-15. Ramirez had the sole hit with a triple, extending his streak to 16 games.
Puigs' struggles epitomized the groups disappointing night, as he went 0-for-4 with four strikeouts. Puigs' average dropped to .406, and the four K's were the first time he has done so in a single game.
Sandoval gunned out Ramirez at home in the seventh, preventing the Dodgers from moving within one run. The theme of Sandoval making great defensive plays continued to haunt the boys in blue in the eighth. Ellis got robbed of a possible RBI single, as Sandoval looked extremely fleet of foot for a 260 pound man.
The Giants bullpen took care of the rest, with Sergio Romo closing the door and setting up an intense Sunday rubber match.
On Sunday, the Dodgers will attempt to tie the season series at six against the Giants. The expected starting pitchers are Clayton Kershaw and Chad Gaudin.
Home run: Tim Federowicz (3)
WP - Madison Bumgarner (9-5 ): 7 IP, 3 hits, 2 runs, 9 strikeouts
LP - Stephen Fife (3-3): 4.1 IP, 7 hits, 4 runs (1 earned), 1 walk
SV - Sergio Romo (20): 1-2-3 inning, 2 strikeouts