BY RYAN LEONG
While the Warriors were gearing up for their parade to celebrate a second NBA title in three years, the Giants were finishing up a disasterous 1-4 home stand by losing two of three to the Twins and being swept in a two-game series against the Royals.
The Giants, like their cross bay rivals the A’s, are both mired in last place. The problem the Giants have is an anemic offense, particularly at home where they routinely struggle to score more than two runs per game. Wednesday’s finale was no different as they were bludgeoned by Kansas City
7-2 at AT&T Park.
This season has been one in which the age of the players is finally catching up to them. 34-year old Hunter Pence has spent much of the season on the disabled list and is only batting .235 with three home runs and 20 RBI. Brandon Belt recently homered into McCovey Cove and has 11 home runs but his average has dipped down to .229 and he only has 28 RBI. The only players averaging .300 or better are Eduardo Nunez and catcher Buster Posey who is batting a robust .348. Simply put, when the Giants fail to score at least four runs, which is often, their record is a dismal 6-33.
“It’s frustrating, especially at home to play like this,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “You think you’re coming out of it Sunday and we slip right back in it and it’s a tough time for these fellas.” Bochy was referring to the one win against the Twins when they scored 13 runs. In the other five games, they collectively scored five runs and that included one game where they were shut out.
It didn’t help that Johnny Cueto couldn’t keep the ball from going into the stands as the Royals clubbed three home runs. Mike Moustakis had the most impressaive clout with the ball bouncing on the portwalk and into McCovey Cove. Jorge Bonifacio and Lorenzo Cain also went deep. Meanwhile the Giants wasted 10 hits because they were 2-for-10 with runners in scoring position leaving 11 men on base.
The few bright spots were an RBI single from rookie Austin Slater while Joe Panik and Nunez had two hits apiece.
“It’s frustrating obviously,” Slater said. “Scoring runs is what we’re trying to do and we’re not getting them across. It’s tough leaving guys on and I know I left three or four on and it’s frustrating and we’ll try to get after it tomorrow.”
It won’t be easy for the Giants who go back on the road for an eight game road trip beginning with a four game series at Colorado. Matt Moore (2-7, 5.28) opposes Colorado’s Jeff Hoffman (4-0, 2.33) tomorrow as San Francisco heads to Denver a season high 15 games out of the second wild card spot.
Ryan Leong is a San Francisco native and covers all Bay Area sports teams as a correspondent for ESPN radio and wire services. He is a former sports anchor for KCBS and has reported on over 3,600 live games since 1998.