Dbacks extend Giants’ losing streak to 7 games with 5-3 win

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PHOENIX — Torey Lovullo’s offensive mantra through six seasons in the desert has been to build innings by getting runners on base, move them around and wait for someone to get a big hit.

A bunt single, a safety bunt and a homer – the Arizona Diamondbacks followed their manager’s plans to perfection in the seventh inning against San Francisco.

Jose Rojas homered after the Diamondbacks scored two runs on Jose Herrera‘s squeeze bunt in the seventh inning, extending the Giants’ losing streak to seven games with a 5-3 win on Wednesday.

“It’s it’s not easy to execute the way we did with that that safety squeeze,” Lovullo said. “I’m looking for just one run in that situation, advance runner to third base with one out. We got we got the bonus because it head’s up baserunning, just a good aggressive play.”

Jake McCarthy opened the seventh inning with a bunt single overturned by video review – he was initially called out – and Sergia Alcantara hit a single off Logan Webb (9-4) after initially squaring around to bunt. He went to second when Giants center fielder Austin Slater tried to throw out McCarthy at third.

McCarthy scored on Herrera’s bunt and Alcantara came around when Giants first baseman Brandon Belt‘s throw sailed to the backstop. Rojas made it 5-2 with a solo homer to the pool deck in right-center.

Noe Ramirez (3-3) allowed a run on one hit in 1 1/3 innings and Mark Melancon worked around two runners for his 14th save in 16 chances. Ketel Marte also homered in Arizona’s first three-game home sweep of San Francisco since 2017.

The Diamondbacks have won five of six since the All-Star break.

“Just being able to able to hold onto certain situations late in the game,” Arizona starter Zac Gallen said. “You don’t want to let balanced teams just hang around from a a finishing standpoint or an offensive standpoint. It’s what we’ve been able to do so far.”

The Giants have not.

San Francisco won five its six games before the All-Star break, but hasn’t won since. The Giants suffered a four-game sweep by the Dodgers in Los Angeles for the first time since 1995 over the weekend have their first 0-7 road trip since 1985 after squandering a solid start by Webb.

Webb allowed four runs on four hits in 6 1/3 innings.

“We need to come out with more fire,” Giants manager Gabe Kapler said.

GALLEN’S START

Gallen backed up a dominating performance with another solid start.

The right-hander threw seven scoreless innings to beat Washington his last start and was nearly as good against the Giants.

Thairo Estrada hit a run-scoring single off Gallen in the fourth inning and put pressure on Arizona’s defense by stealing second. Diamondbacks shortstop Sergio Alcantara dropped the throw, allowing Luis Gonzalez to score from third, putting the Giants up 2-1.

Gallen allowed two runs – one earned – on three hits and struck out five in five innings. He has allowed three earned runs in 18 2/3 over three starts since the All-Star break.

“I just had a chance to reset over the break,” Gallen said. “Sometimes the break will be good or bad. In this case so far, it’s been pretty good.

TRAINER’S TABLE

Giants: C Joey Bart was not in the lineup after being leaving Tuesday’s game because of illness. … 2B Tommy La Stella started in left field and went 0 for 5 after being activated from the COVID-19 list on Tuesday.

UP NEXT

Giants: LHP Justin Steele (4-6, 4.02 ERA) is 3-1 with a 3.12 ERA his last seven starts heading into Thursday’s series opener against LHP Alex Wood and the Chicago Cubs.

Diamondbacks: Arizona has a day off before opening a three-game series at Atlanta on Friday. LHP Madison Bumgarner (6-9, 3.71), who has won three of his past four starts, had the only unofficial no-hitter under the old doubleheader rules against the Braves on April 25, 2021.

Yankees star Judge hits 62nd homer to break Maris’ AL record

New York Yankees v Texas Rangers - Game Two
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ARLINGTON, Texas – Aaron Judge hit his 62nd home run of the season Tuesday night, breaking Roger Maris’ American League record and setting what some fans consider baseball’s “clean” standard.

The 30-year-old Yankees slugger drove a 1-1 slider from Texas right-hander Jesus Tinoco into the first couple of rows of seats in left field when leading off the second game of New York’s day-night doubleheader.

Maris’ 61 for the Yankees in 1961 had been exceeded six times previously, but all were tainted by the stench of steroids. Mark McGwire hit 70 for the St. Louis Cardinals in 1998 and 65 the following year. Barry Bonds hit an MLB-record 73 for the San Francisco Giants in 2001, and the Chicago Cubs’ Sammy Sosa had 66, 65 and 63 during a four-season span starting in 1998.

McGwire admitted using banned steroids, while Bonds and Sosa denied knowingly using performing-enhancing drugs. Major League Baseball started testing with penalties for PEDs in 2004, and some fans – perhaps many – until now have considered Maris as holder of the legitimate record.

A Ruthian figure with a smile as outsized as his body, the 6-foot-7 Judge has rocked the major leagues with a series of deep drives that hearken to the sepia tone movie reels of his legendary pinstriped predecessors.

“He should be revered for being the actual single-season home run champ,” Roger Maris Jr. said Wednesday night after his father’s mark was matched by Judge. “I think baseball needs to look at the records and I think baseball should do something.”

Judge had homered only once in the past 13 games, and that was when he hit No. 61 last Wednesday in Toronto. The doubleheader nightcap in Texas was his 55th game in row played since Aug. 5.

After a single in five at-bats in the first game Tuesday, Judge was 3 for 17 with five walks and a hit by pitch since moving past the 60 home runs Babe Ruth hit in 1927, which had stood as the major league record for 34 years. Maris hit his 61st off Boston’s Tracy Stallard at old Yankee Stadium on Oct. 1, 1961.

Judge has a chance to become the first AL Triple Crown winner since Detroit’s Miguel Cabrera in 2012. He leads the AL with 131 RBIs and began the day trailing Minnesota’s Luis Arraez, who was hitting .315.

The home run in his first at-bat put him back to .311, where he had started the day before dropping a point in the opener.

Judge’s accomplishment will cause endless debate.

“To me, the holder of the record for home runs in a season is Roger Maris,” author George Will said earlier this month. “There’s no hint of suspicion that we’re seeing better baseball than better chemistry in the case of Judge. He’s clean. He’s not doing something that forces other players to jeopardize their health.”