SF Giants end wacky road trip with walkoff loss to Mets

SF Giants end wacky road trip with walkoff loss to Mets

NEW YORK — And what a weird, wacky trip it was.

If there was a game the Giants were set up to lose on this six-game swing through the Eastern Time Zone, it seemed they were able to pull it out. And then there were those they seemed well-positioned to win, which bookended four improbable wins with a pair of tough-luck, walkoff losses.

The latest bad break came in the bottom of the ninth inning on a hot and humid Sunday afternoon at Citi Field, as Mets catcher Omar Narvaez ripped a single into center field off Tyler Rogers to walk off the Giants, 4-3, capping a three-run rally that flipped the score from a 3-1 San Francisco advantage and wasted a brilliant effort from Logan Webb.

“I felt like we had a good chance to win the game, obviously,” manager Bob Melvin said. “The first game of the (road trip) was tough. The last game was tough. In between was good. But it just felt like a game we were going to win.”

The Giants went 4-2 on the trip, though their record could have just as easily been 6-0, 0-6 or 2-4 with the unpredictable nature of each game.

“It was a weird one,” said Webb, who limited the Mets to one unearned run over seven innings with a season-high eight strikeouts. “Anytime you come away and win more games than you lose on a road trip, it’s good. I wish we won the other two, but it was just a crazy road trip.”

After reeling off four straight wins to get their record over .500 for the first time this season, the Giants return home to host the hottest team in the sport — the Philadelphia Phillies — with their record even at 27-27 and their pitching staff in questionable shape.

Camilo Doval was unavailable Sunday, having pitched in four of their previous five games, so the Giants called on Rogers, who let a high chopper from Brandon Nimmo glance off his glove on the first pitch of the inning. The next batter, J.D. Martinez, also attacked the first pitch and lined a single in right field, putting the tying run on base before Rogers had thrown his third pitch of the inning. In all, he allowed six of the seven batters he faced to reach base.

“I don’t know that it looked like he had his best stuff today,” Melvin said of Rogers. “But if you get the first out of the inning, it feels a little different.”

“My effort today kind of put a stink on the road trip, but it was a great road trip for the boys,” Rogers said. “Yeah, (the leadoff hit) changes the course of the inning. But you feel good about yourself when you’re out there and get some weak contact like that. You just move on to the next one, another first-pitch single. Two pitches, to me that situation happened pretty quick. Tried to navigate from there, and some balls were hit where the guys weren’t.”

The Giants led 3-1 entering the bottom of the ninth, thanks to seven strong innings from Webb and two more hits from Brett Wisely.

Making his second straight start at short, Wisely gave the Giants the lead for the second game in a row with a solo shot in the third inning, after a recording three hits the previous night while delivering the tie-breaking knock in extra innings. At Triple-A this time last month, Wisely was only added to the roster amid a slew of injuries and only made his third career start at short due to Marco Luciano’s defensive woes on the first part of the trip.

After his big game Saturday, Wisely chalked it up to the brown striped polo shirt he wore to the ballpark. Emblazoned with one of the Seven Dwarves — Grumpy — on his left chest, Wisely said the shirt brings good luck and joked that he planned to wear it again the following day.

Before the game, Melvin said he hoped to prioritize the infield defense behind Webb, one of the league’s top ground ball pitchers, and with five errors from Luciano in the first five games of the trip, that meant Wisely got the nod despite only 34 previous games there at any level.

It turned out to be a moot point as Webb transformed into a strikeout artist for seven innings, racking up a season-high eight punchouts — his most since he fanned 10 Rockies in his last start before the All-Star break last year — and forcing the Mets to swing and miss 17 times, also a season-high.

“I felt good with all my pitches today, and that’s probably a first for this year,” Webb said. “I thought my mechanics felt the best they’ve felt all year. My stuff was crisp. Better than it has the last couple (of starts) for sure.”

Limiting his opponents to one run (none earned) on three hits, Webb has himself to blame for the only damage the Mets managed. He was charged with an error on a difficult play that put D.J. Stewart on base in the second inning, mishandling a toss from Wilmer Flores after the first baseman snagged a sharply hit line drive.

“I had no clue where the base was, so I took my eye off of it for a second,” Webb said. “Just missed it.”

Webb and Stewart converged at the bag at the same time, and the ball bounced out of Webb’s mitt, allowing Stewart to make it to second, putting him in position to score on a base hit a couple batters later from Harrison Bader. Webb retired 16 of the next 18 batters, and one of the two runners he allowed on base was erased by Patrick Bailey, who caught Francisco Lindor trying to swipe second to end the third inning.

“Efficient, hot day, very few hits and only one walk,” Melvin said of Webb’s effort. “Those types of games you expect to win.”

Facing old friend Sean Manaea, who signed with the Mets after opting out of his deal in San Francisco, Wisely whacked the first strike of the top of the third into the bullpens beyond right-center field that opened a 2-1 advantage, and the Giants would tack on an insurance run once Manaea left the game after five innings.

The home run was Wisely’s first of the season, and in 15 at-bats since being called up May 11 the diminutive middle infielder has seven hits.

“He’s swinging the bat really well,” Melvin said. “That’s not the easiest of assignments as far as lefty-lefty with Manaea. He hits a homer and the next time up shoots a ball the other way; looks comfortable in the field no matter where we’re putting him. Since he’s gotten a little bit of regular playing time here he’s played really well.”

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Following a cross-country flight scheduled to land late Sunday night, the Giants host the red-hot Phillies for a Memorial Day matinee (2:05 p.m. PT).

LHP Blake Snell (0-3, 11.40) was reinstated from the paternity list and is tentatively scheduled to start, but his girlfriend, Haeley Mar, is still awaiting the birth of the couple’s first child. Her due date was last Monday, and Snell flew back to the Bay Area after his start Wednesday in Pittsburgh, but they continue to wait.

“I don’t know what the next step is. He threw his bullpen yesterday or the day before, so he’s ready to pitch,” Melvin said Sunday. “The good thing is he’s still with her and she’s there in San Francisco. We’ll see what happens. Once we get home we’ll take stock.”

The Giants’ starter Tuesday is just as much up in the air, with Keaton Winn (forearm) still sidelined, Mason Black back at Triple-A and their bullpen taxed. Winn is eligible to be activated Thursday, but Melvin was not optimistic that he would be ready by the end of the home stand.

The Phillies, 30-7 in their past 37 games entering Sunday, are scheduled to throw right-handers Taijuan Walker (3-0, 5.06) and Zack Wheeler (6-3, 2.53) and end the series with lefty Christopher Sánchez (2-3, 5.15).