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Behind Matos’ catch, Yastrzemski’s homer, SF Giants avoid sweep against Dodgers

SAN FRANCISCO — Before Wednesday’s series finale against the Dodgers, Curt Casali, who just signed a one-year contract to join the Black and Orange, was asked about team morale amid a wave of injuries. Although Casali can’t speak to the temperature of the room, he may have instead foreshadowed what was to come in the hours that followed.

“Hopefully I can be a little spark for the boys and get a win against the Dodgers tonight,” Casali said.

Led by Mike Yastrzemski’s two-run home run, Logan Webb’s six shutout innings, Luis Matos’ impressive home run and, yes, solid work from Casali, the Giants (20-25) beat the Dodgers ( 29-16), 4-1, at Oracle Park, avoiding a sweep and securing its first victory against its Southern California rivals this season.

A night away from an unforgettable defensive exhibition, Matos threw his hat into the play of the year conversation in the top of the fourth, perfectly tracking Teoscar Hernández’s deep drive to center field, leaping, extending and stealing a home run run, hitting his body in almost the exact same spot where Jung Hoo Lee dislocated his left shoulder. Oracle Park erupted in cheers and Webb immediately raised his arms in jubilation, but the stadium went silent as Matos sat on the warning track, clearly in shock from his collision.

The Giants have already sent seven position players to the injured list since last Friday, and as head athletic trainer Dave Groeschner rushed to center field, it was fair to wonder if Matos would be next in line. . After a review that lasted several minutes, Groeschner returned to the home dugout alone and Matos remained in the game.

Matos also contributed with his bat, driving in a run with a single and extending the lead to three in the bottom of the eighth inning to provide an insurance run for Camilo Doval.

With the help of Matos’ gloves, Webb made his seventh quality start of the season, striking out five batters and walking three during his six scoreless innings. For Webb, Wednesday’s start against the Dodgers was a rebound after allowing a season-high five earned runs to Los Angeles in 3 2/3 innings on April 2.

The most intriguing part of Webb’s evening was not his score, but his pitch mix. Coming into the game, Webb’s four-seam fastball made up only 4.5 percent of his pitches this season, but against the Dodgers, Webb threw 17 four-seams. The four-seam fastball hasn’t been a significant part of his repertoire since 2020, when the pitch made up 32.4% of his offering. Since 2022, Webb has only two games in which he threw at least 10 four-seam fastballs (August 13, 2023 and April 23, 2024).

California Daily Newspapers

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