The Giants returned to the shores of McCovey Cove on Thursday, facing a curious but important question: Can they sustain their surge at home?
Manager Bruce Bochy’s crew, fresh off a 6-1 trip to Milwaukee and Colorado, will face the New York Mets to open a seven-game homestand. The Giants have been mediocre this season at Oracle Park, with the second-worst home record (20-26) in the National League.
“It’s hard to even compare our home record to what we’ve been able to do over the last three weeks,” center fielder Kevin Pillar said before Thursday night’s game. “You’ve seen a completely different team as far as confidence and belief.”
The Giants are 27-23 on the road. They’ve hit more than twice as many home runs away from San Francisco (69 to 34), and they’re averaging 5.5 runs per game on the road compared with only 3.4 at home.
So this homestand offers a familiar obstacle, trying to push across runs in a spacious park more conducive to low-scoring games than Coors Field-like outbursts.
Photo: David Zalubowski / Associated Press
Image 1 4
“It’s always going to be a little more challenging here vs. a hitter’s park,” Bochy said. “That said, we’re going to be facing some good teams and some really good pitching. … But we feel good about how we’re playing, and the fact we are putting more runs on the board and not giving up as many.”
This homestand features the Mets for four games and then the NL Central-leading Chicago Cubs for three. Pillar welcomes the chance to face opponents not entirely accustomed to Oracle Park’s quirks.
“It’s hard to be better than we were on this last road trip, but we are excited to be back home, especially when you’re playing teams that don’t come here often,” Pillar said. “There’s a huge home-field advantage here, as far as the dimensions and the elements that we’re a little more used to.”
Roster moves: The Giants did some bullpen juggling Thursday, recalling left-handed reliever Williams Jerez from Triple-A Sacramento.
They also optioned left-hander Andrew Suarez to Sacramento; added right-hander Jandel Gustave to the 40-man roster and optioned him to Sacramento; and moved left-hander Travis Bergen (strained shoulder) to the 60-day injured list.
This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/giants/article/Giants-return-home-on-a-roll-can-they-keep-it-up-14106999.php.