The Giants won their sixth straight, beating the Dodgers 5-3 behind another strong pitching performance by Matt Morris, lots of hits, and a stumbling, bumbling DL (didn’t lose) from Armando Benitez. Special Agent Jack Taschner came in, faced one batter, and got the biggest out of the game, (actually, outs, since it was a sweet double play with the tying run on base in the bottom of the eighth), and Omar Vizquel celebrated his 40th birthday with several superb defensive plays.
UPDATE: One of my loyal readers wondered why I’m giving Benitez such a hard time, as the two hits allowed were of the “seeing eye” variety. Well, first of all, they weren’t. Kent’s single was a clean knock, but that’s not my concern. My concern is that Benitez is missing his catcher’s glove, sometimes by as much as two feet; as opposed to, say, Taschner, who is exhibiting pinpoint control right now. Watching the two pitchers is a study in contrast. Taschner exhibits none of the ticks and facial quirks, none of the huffing and puffing and walking around the mound and all of the histrionics that have become commonplace for Benitez.
In point of fact, Benitez seems to be barely in control of his pitches, (not to mention his emotions). He is getting through the ninth by the slimmest of margins, and was lucky last night. That is what I am seeing. How many times have we seen the Giants completely derailed by a disastrous blown save? How close were we to seeing that happen last night? How much longer can we walk this tightrope?
Bochy has already indicated that he is losing patience with Pedro Feliz’s inability to lay off the pitch in the dirt, thank God. One can only hope that we don’t have to actually lose games for him to grow tired of the circus saves Benitez seems addicted to.