Nuts Erase Deficit, Top Giants In Series Opener

San Jose falls 7-5; Winn's hit streak snapped at 16 games

By San Jose Giants | May 15, 2018 11:00 PM

SAN JOSE, CA - The Modesto Nuts overcame a three-run deficit on Tuesday night in a 7-5 come-from-behind victory over the Giants at Municipal Stadium. In the opener of a three-game series, Modesto scored four times in the top of the sixth to take the lead before holding off San Jose late to secure the win. With the defeat, the Giants (22-17) have suffered back-to-back home losses for the first time this season.

Jalen Miller (3-for-5, 2 2B, RBI) had three hits, including a pair of doubles, to lead San Jose offensively in the loss. Bryce Johnson (2-for-4, 2B, RBI, SB) and Wander Franco (2-for-5, 2B, RBI) added two hits apiece. Matt Winn (0-for-2, 2 BB) saw his hitting streak snapped at 16 games.

The Giants built a 4-1 lead through five innings on Tuesday before the Nuts staged their comeback. Following a Modesto run in the top of the first against San Jose starter Conner Menez, the Giants responded with two runs in the bottom of the frame to immediately take the lead. Johnson led off by drawing a walk before stealing second. Miller then doubled down the right field line to plate Johnson with the tying run before Franco stepped to the plate and also delivered an RBI double down the right field line putting San Jose in front 2-1.

The Giants then added to their lead with single tallies in the third and fifth innings. In the bottom of the third, Johnson and Miller produced consecutive singles to start the inning. Franco's deep fly out to right then advanced Johnson to third before Jacob Heyward lifted a sacrifice fly to center scoring the run.

In the fifth, Franco singled with one out, advanced to second on a Heyward groundout, moved to third on a wild pitch and came home on Gio Brusa's single to left.

Meanwhile, Menez breezed through the majority of his start allowing just one run on four hits over the first five innings. The left-hander struck out the side in a perfect top of the second before pitching around a one-out single in the third. In the fourth, Kyle Lewis doubled with one out, but was stranded. Then in the fifth, a walk and an error put two runners on base, but Menez escaped.

San Jose carried a 4-1 lead into the top of the sixth when Modesto rallied. Menez plunked Donnie Walton to start the inning before issuing a four-pitch walk to Evan White. Following a Lewis strikeout, Joe Rizzo laced a single into right plating Walton with the first run of the inning. White also advanced to third while Rizzo moved into second on the throw home from right fielder Sandro Fabian. A wild pitch uncorked by Menez then scored White before Anthony Jimenez lofted a fly ball to the warning track in deep right center for a triple as Rizzo came home to tie the game 4-4. The hit ended Menez's night as Tyler Schimpf entered from the bullpen and he promptly threw a wild pitch on his first offering as Jimenez scored giving the Nuts a 5-4 lead.

Modesto scored four runs in the top of the sixth on just two hits. Two runs scored in the inning on wild pitches.

After both teams were held scoreless in the seventh, the Nuts added to their lead with a run in the top of the eighth. White led off with a triple down the right field line against Schimpf (2 1/3 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 2 SO) before Lewis struck out and Rizzo grounded out. Jeff Burke was then summoned from the bullpen and he was greeted by a two-out RBI single from Jimenez as White scored to make it 6-4.

The Giants cut the lead in half with a run in the bottom of the eighth on back-to-back two-out doubles from Brandon Van Horn and Johnson. However with the potential tying run at second, Miller struck out swinging to end the inning.

Modesto then plated a key insurance run in the top of the ninth. With Burke (1 1/3 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 1 SO) still on the mound, Jansiel Rivera was hit by a pitch with one out before Bryson Brigman singled. Walton then singled to left plating Rivera for a 7-5 Nuts advantage.

Seth Elledge closed out the Modesto win with a 1-2-3 bottom of the ninth.

Austin Hutchison (1-1) earned the win out of the Nuts bullpen after tossing three innings with one run allowed. Elledge notched his fifth save of the year.

Menez (2-2) was saddled with the loss after yielding five runs (all earned) on six hits over 5 1/3 innings. He walked three and struck out eight.

Notes
* The Giants are 2-3 on their current homestand. San Jose has had a three-run lead in all three losses.
* Both teams finished with 11 hits on Tuesday.
* Winn walked twice, struck out and grounded out to go hitless for the first time since April 19. He owns the second-longest hit streak in the California League this season (Jonah Heim, Stockton - 19 games).
* Franco's double was his league-leading 16th of the season.
* Menez increased his season strikeout total to 52 - tied for third in the league.
* The Giants fell two games behind Stockton (24-15) in first half North Division race.

On Deck
The Giants and Nuts continue their three-game series on Wednesday evening with first pitch at Municipal Stadium scheduled for 6:30 PM. Raffi Vizcaino (3-2, 4.02 ERA) is slated to start on the mound for San Jose while Modesto is expected to counter with Darren McCaughan (2-3, 2.61 ERA). It's an Orange Out Wednesday at the ballpark and tickets can be purchased by calling (408) 297-1435 or by visiting sjgiants.com.

This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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