Poor Matt Cain. For almost any other non-Giant pitcher, going 7 innings and allowing just 4 hits and 2 earned runs while striking out 7 will get you a win. For Matt Cain, he gets a loss*. Because the Giants offense could only score one run against the struggling Padres, who took the final game of the series 3-1.
*Yet another example of why using W-L records to judge the quality of a pitcher is absurd
Of note, Justin Christian (54 steals in 59 attempts in the minors) got picked off by Aaron Harang in the 3rd inning. Welcome to the bigs, n00b! Of more note (is that even a thing?), Brett Pill hit his second homerun in as many days, tying Carlos Beltran for homeruns hit as a Giant this season. And it only took Pill two days to do it!
I’m still uncertain as to why Darren Ford is on the roster, and why he is ever put in as a pinch runner to try to steal a base. Aubrey Huff came in to pinch hit for Cain in the 8th, picking up a single. Ford took Huff’s place at first base, with Andres Torres in as a pinch hitter for Christian. Any time Ford comes in, the other team knows he’s going to steal. So the Padres called a pitch-out, and Ford was thrown out easily trying to take second. That makes him only 5 of 10 on the year in steals. Not quite the return you’d expect from a guy whose sole apparent value is to steal bases in the late innings in close games.
The Padres’ final insurance run in the 8th inning was unearned, courtesy of Orlando Cabrera’s error on Will Venable’s pop-up to shallow left field. Cabrera called Pablo Sandoval off, then totally missed the catch. Venable was safe at first, scoring two batters later on a Cameron Maybin triple.
I guess Bochy’s gut wasn’t very good at filling out the line-up card today. Maybe Friday he’ll let his pancreas take a shot at it.
Up next: After an off-day tomorrow, the Giants are at home for a 3-game series against the Hated Dodgers.