After a disappointing regular season for the World Series defending champions, the San Francisco Giants have been looking for signs of hope anywhere on their roster.
With Tim Lincecum’s outstanding no-hit performance before the all-star break, it looked as though the Giants might make another magical run at winning their division and eventually hoisting what would have been their third World Series trophy in the last four years. Unfortunately for the orange and black, this season has only shown glimpses of their potential, but last night proved to be another example of why the fans of San Francisco have plenty to be excited about in the coming years.
Yusmeiro Petit is not a household name, but he certainly made a case of why he deserves to be after retiring 26 straight hitters in last night’s win over the Arizona Diamondbacks. The 28-year-old right-hander out of Venezuela was making just his fourth major league start for the Giants and was supposed to be nothing more than an injury replacement. In Petit’s eyes, he saw this game as much more than just a way to help his team win a ballgame. This was a rare opportunity to earn a permanent spot on the Giants 40-man roster and Petit took full advantage of it.
For a pitcher who scouts do not consider to have an overpowering fastball, Petit understood that he would need to be conservative with his pitches by successfully locating around the strike zone.
His game plan worked and as a result, he soon found himself one pitch away from a perfect game. With two outs in the ninth inning and a full count on pinch-hitter Eric Chavez, Chavez singled into right field on a ball that fell just inches short of Hunter Pence’s glove. Despite his failure to become just the 24 pitcher in MLB history to toss a perfect game, Petit’s valiant effort may have landed him a spot in the Giants starting rotation. Not only were the commentators impressed with Petit’s presence on the mound, but also his ability to keep Diamondbacks hitters off balance made the game fun to watch for the 41,190 fans in attendance.
In the postgame interview, Giants Manager Bruce Bochy shared his thoughts on the unforgettable night.
“It was a beautiful game, just a tremendous display of pitching,” said Bochy. “He’s trying to send a message that this is where he belongs and that this is where he should be pitching,” he added. Bochy’s words displayed a great deal of respect for the young right-hander and Petit should be expecting to throw a high number of innings for the rest of the season.
Sonoma State is filled with lifetime Giants fans that have bled the orange and black since birth. Arguably the biggest fan on campus is Nicolas Payan, a third year junior from Fresno.
“It’s been difficult to watch the Giants struggle this season, but the performance that Petit put on last night definitely shows good signs for the future,” said Payan.
He went on to talk about the classy organization that is run in San Francisco and is confident that another championship will return to the bay soon.