January 22, 2021
SF Giants win fifth straight, Yastrzemski makes sensational catch to aid Anderson’s dominant complete game

SF Giants win fifth straight, Yastrzemski makes sensational catch to aid Anderson’s dominant complete game


For the San Francisco Giants’ rebuild to be successful, the organization needs the homegrown talent within a promising farm system to form a dynamic future core.

For the Giants’ rebuilding process to be expedited, president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi must also surround the organization’s highly touted prospects with complimentary pieces who can turn the Giants into a sustainable winner sooner rather than later.

With a 5-1 series-clinching victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Saturday at Oracle Park, the Giants extended their win streak to five games on the shoulders of a few under-the-radar bargain additions who could play pivotal roles in the years to come.

Starter Tyler Anderson tossed a dominant complete game and became the third Giants starter in the last three seasons to go the distance, joining Madison Bumgarner (7/18/19) and Chris Stratton (9/14/18). Anderson limited the D’backs to three hits and an unearned run while right fielder Mike Yastrzemski made a sensational run-saving catch and gave the Giants the lead with a bases loaded walk in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Yastrzemski, who was acquired in a 2019 minor league trade with the Baltimore Orioles, drew his National League-best 23rd walk shortly after top prospect Joey Bart came off the bench to deliver a double off the top of the center field wall.

Bart’s third extra-base hit in three major league games set the tone for a four-run seventh inning that also featured a bases loaded walk from left fielder Alex Dickerson and RBI single from first baseman Brandon Belt.

The late offensive outburst made the night that much sweeter for Anderson, who was acquired on a waiver claim last winter after being let go by the Colorado Rockies. After undergoing major knee surgery last season, Anderson came to the Giants with an opportunity to reestablish himself in the big leagues and has capitalized since taking over a full-time job in the starting rotation.

After allowing a one-out double to Ketel Marte in the top of the first, Anderson retired 16 consecutive D’backs hitters until he nicked the jersey of Arizona leadoff hitter Kole Calhoun with a pitch in the top of the sixth. Anderson had yet to record an out in the sixth inning this year, but picked up his first thanks to an impressive running catch by left fielder Alex Dickerson to open the inning.

Dickerson’s catch was practically forgettable within minutes thanks to an incredible leaping catch at the right field wall by Yastrzemski. On the eve of his 30th birthday, Yastrzemski went ranging onto the warning track in straightaway right field while tracking a long flyball off Marte’s bat.

The Giants right fielder wound up jumping into the fence and snagging the ball in the air before crashing onto the dirt in front of the 24-foot wall. Yastrzemski received a hero’s welcome back in the Giants dugout as the catch prevented Arizona from tying the game.

For a Giants defense that’s ranked among the worst in the league this season, Yastrzemski’s catch was easily the most impressive play any member of the club has made in the field.

The Giants’ defense did hurt Anderson’s cause in the following inning as Starling Marte reached to open the inning on an uncharacteristic throwing error from shortstop Brandon Crawford. Marte stole second base with ease and then scored on a David Peralta single that slipped through the shifted Giants defense that had three players set up on left side of the infield.

That was the only damage the D’backs did against Anderson, who worked in harmony with Giants catcher Chadwick Tromp throughout the night.

With Giants manager Gabe Kapler wanting to give Bart a breather behind the plate following back-to-bak starts to open his career, Tromp started on Saturday and impressed for the first seven inning until Bart came in as a pinch-hitter and defensive replacement.

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Author: Kerry Crowley