SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Few pitchers have the luxury to sit back
and compare their one-hitters -- especially when the gems came only
a month apart.
Jason Schmidt has shown recently that he's unlike most pitchers,
able to shut down even the toughest lineups.
Schmidt pitched his second one-hitter of the season to win his
ninth straight decision and Edgardo Alfonzo hit a grand slam for
his second big hit in as many days, leading the San Francisco
Giants to a 4-0 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Sunday.
"I like this one better," Schmidt said, comparing it to his
1-0 win against the Cubs on May 18. "I can say today I actually
felt good. I felt sharp. All my pitches were working. It felt
Before last month, no Giants pitcher had thrown a one-hitter
since Scott Garrelts in 1990. No San Francisco pitcher had put
together two games as good as Schmidt in one season since Gaylord
Perry threw a no-hitter and a one-hitter in 1968.
But the Giants expect brilliance from Schmidt (9-2), who won the
NL ERA title last season and has matched the longest winning streak
for a Giants pitcher since Rick Reuschel also won nine straight in
1989. The only blemish in 133 pitches was Kevin Youkilis' clean
double to lead off the sixth inning.
"To repeat what he did in Chicago -- not many guys can do
that," manager Felipe Alou said. "It's only June and he's already
pitched two one-hitters. We believe every time he takes the mound
he has a shot at pitching a no-hitter. That's the way I felt about
Pedro Martinez when he pitched for me."
Schmidt struck out nine and walked two in his 15th career
shutout and the first against Boston since last Sept. 17.
"He's a pretty explosive pitcher," Boston's Jason Varitek
said. "You see that same kind of stuff, but you don't often see
that kind of location with it."
Schmidt's brilliance and Alfonzo's timely homer helped the
Giants win the first meaningful series between the teams since
Boston won the 1912 World Series against the New York Giants.
Like that series, this one also was decided with help from a fly
ball that fell in the outfield. In the 10th inning of the eighth
game of the 1912 World Series -- there was one tie -- Fred Snodgrass
dropped a routine fly to center that sparked a two-run Boston rally
that gave the Red Sox a 3-2 win.
Boston starter Bronson Arroyo (2-6) was effectively wild,
holding the Giants scoreless until the seventh despite walking five
and hitting a batter.
Alan Embree came on and got Bonds to hit a high fly to shallow
left that fell between left fielder Kevin Millar and third baseman
Youkilis. Millar picked up the ball and fired to shortstop Nomar
Garciaparra, who appeared to get the force at third; even Alfonzo
thought Tucker was out.
But second base umpire Sam Holbrook called Tucker safe,
prompting a boisterous argument from Red Sox manager Terry
Francona, who was ejected.
"It was big," Francona said. "The umpire told me he beat the
throw. The replays don't matter. The game's over. There's nothing I
can do about it."
Alfonzo greeted Mike Timlin with a grand slam into the
left-field seats that made it 4-0. Alfonzo, who hit a tiebreaking
two-run shot in the eighth inning Saturday to give the Giants a 6-4
win, gave a curtain call to the energized sellout crowd of 42,568.
"With the bases loaded, I just want to try to get the ball to
the outfield and score a run," he said. "I was able to make
Bonds, playing on his first Father's Day since his dad, Bobby,
died last August, finished 1-for-2 with two walks.
The Giants have won 11 of 16 heading into a four-game showdown
with first-place Los Angeles, starting Monday in San Francisco.
After Youkilis' double, Arroyo tried to bunt the runner over,
but missed on the third strike and walked toward the dugout.
But A.J. Pierzynski, crossed up on the play, dropped the ball
and someone in the Boston dugout alerted Arroyo, who scampered to
first to reach on the passed ball.
Pierzynski had come out to the mound to talk about the crossup
with Schmidt, who figured there must be some rule he didn't know
about that kept Pierzynski from needing to throw to first.
"That was a bonehead play by me," Pierzynski said.
"Fortunately it didn't hurt us."
Boston and Tampa Bay are the only teams Bonds has played
against and not homered. Bonds has never played Cleveland. ...
Arroyo is 0-5 with a 6.12 ERA in his last six starts.