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Third base coach Ron Wotus plays pivotal role in Giants' comeback win over Padres

Kerry Crowley, The Mercury News on

Published in Baseball

SAN FRANCISCO -- Evan Longoria will receive the credit he deserves in Tuesday's box score for hammering a go-ahead, two-run double into the left field corner.

Third base coach Ron Wotus's name never shows up on the stat sheet, but his performance in the San Francisco Giants' 6-5 win over the San Diego Padres was nearly as important as Longoria's.

With two outs in the bottom of the seventh, pinch hitter Brandon Belt had no trouble scoring the tying run from third on Longoria's line drive off reliever Trey Wingenter that sailed to the side of Padres left fielder Wil Myers.

For the Giants to take the lead, however, second baseman Joe Panik would need to score all the way from first.

Wotus made sure that happened.

As Myers collected the ball and tossed it to shortstop Fernando Tatis, Jr., Wotus made one of his most aggressive decisions of the season as he waved Panik toward the plate.

 

An average relay may have stopped Panik in his tracks halfway home, but Myers' throw to Tatis was low and the shortstop's toss to catcher Austin Hedges pulled him well up the third base line.

Wotus' quick decision helped the Giants take a 5-4 lead and also allowed Longoria to advance to third and later score a much-needed insurance run on a Pablo Sandoval sacrifice fly.

The Padres cut a two-run lead in half on a home run from Ian Kinsler off Tony Watson in the eighth, but closer Will Smith picked up his 15th save in 15 chances with a smooth ninth inning.

San Diego initially took a 4-3 fifth-inning lead on a bizarre sequence of events as the Padres scored three runs in the fifth without ever hitting a ball out of the infield.

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