Sunday, February 5

SF Giants drop Game 1 of doubleheader vs. Mets — and lose a starter in the process – The Mercury News

QUEENS, New York — Two overturned calls at first base proved to be the difference in the San Francisco Giants’ 5-4 extra-innings defeat to the New York Mets in the first game of their doubleheader Tuesday, snapping their winning streak at five games . But arguably the bigger loss came before the 10th-inning walk-off.

Covering first base on the first of the overturned calls — a would-be double-play ball in the fifth inning — Giants starter Alex Cobb strained his right groin, enough to force him from the game and, afterward, land him on the 10- day injured list.

The play that injured Cobb also proved crucial to the outcome of Tuesday’s game, with the Mets benefitting from the replay review that overturned a double play that would have erased Travis Jankowski, who later came around to score in a three-run fifth inning that tied the game at 4, where it would remain until Francisco Lindor’s walk-off in the bottom of the 10th against Giants reliever Jarlin Garcia.

Perhaps the most controversial decision by MLB replay officials in New York came in the top of the 10th, after Thairo Estrada hustled up the first-base line on a ground ball and forced an errant throw for the second time this week. This one came from Lindor and appeared to pull Pete Alonso off the first base bag, allowing Brandon Belt to score what would have been the go-ahead run in the 10th inning. But while Estrada’s hustle against the Guardians led to a run over the weekend in Cleveland, this time replay review showed the tip of Alonso’s cleat was on the bag as the ball entered his glove, keeping the game tied, setting up a walk-off single from Lindor to deliver the Mets the win.

“Through 162, you hope to get those to balance out a little bit. But it definitely hurts in the moment and cost us the game tonight,” said Cobb, who was placed on the 10-day injured list after his early exit from the game, allowing four runs (three earned) over 4⅓ innings.

If the pitching matchup of Cobb and Tylor Megill was billed as the undercard to Logan Webb’s showdown with Max Scherzer in the Giants’ doubleheader with the Mets Tuesday, San Francisco likely wishes it was that uneventful.

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On a day when the Giants scored the first runs Megill has allowed all season — a scoreless streak of 17⅓ innings, dating back to last year — their offensive outburst and extra-inning loss was overshadowed by their starting pitcher exiting the game injured.

While the Giants’ four runs off Megill came in the second and third — on Joc Pederson’s third home run of the season and a pair of RBI singles by Vosler and Brandon Crawford — it was the fifth that proved crucial, before the teams exchanged scoring threats in the late innings.

Cobb had cruised through four innings, allowing little more than soft contact and needing only 49 pitches, but recorded only one out in the fifth before manager Gabe Kapler and head athletic trainer Dave Groeschner came to pull him from the game with what the club described as a right adductor strain. Cobb had grabbed at his right groin while coming off the mound to cover first base on a double down the right-field line by Jeff McNeil, which drove in two runs and put the typing run on second base.

Cobb believes he tweaked his groin a couple plays prior to that, covering first base after Jankowski grounded a would-be double-play ball to Belt, who fired to Crawford at second base for the force out. Crawford’s toss back to Cobb was initially ruled to be in time, which would have left the Mets with the bases empty and two outs with only the one run they plated in the first inning. But Jankowski was called safe upon review and eventually scored one of three fifth-inning runs, typing the game at 4.

“I felt that I got him out,” Cobb said. “It felt bang-bang. I guess it wasn’t so clear on the video replay.”

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