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This is how to bust a slump.
Andrew McCutchen’s career in San Francisco was off to a dubious start. Through six games, the five-time All-Star and former NL MVP with the Pittsburgh Pirates was 2-for-24 with nothing to show in the home run, RBI or stolen base column.
On Saturday, McCutchen’s bat caught fire as the Giants center fielder went 6-for-7 with four RBI, two runs scored and a walk-off home run to down the rival Los Angeles Dodgers, 7-5 in the 14th inning. McCutchen’s game winner came on the 12th pitch of his at-bat with the Giants trailing 5-4.
And he did it in front of an eager home crowd that showered him with love.
“Finally showed up today,” McCutchen told NBC Bay Area Sports after the game. “Finally. It’s only what, Game 7? But you’re not getting hits, it feels like its been forever. It feels good to show up today and get the job done.”
McCutchen’s night improved his batting average from .083 to a much more respectable .258.
He told NBCS-BA that he looked to his glove while the hits weren’t coming, a lesson learned over years of dealing with the streaky nature of baseball hitting.
“My whole motto is when I’m on defense, let’s try and take hits away when I don’t get them,” McCutchen said. “Play good defense and I knew the bat was going to come.”
McCutchen’s feat is something that hasn’t happened in MLB since, well, Andrew McCutchen did it.
McCutchen wasn’t the only Giant off to a slow start, with San Francisco ranking 28th in MLB in runs scored while hitting .234 as a team even after Saturday’s relative offensive explosion that saw the team get 17 hits.
But the Giants have stayed afloat early with some solid pitching performances and now sit at 4-3 while knocking the Dodgers to fourth place in the NL West standings with a 2-6 record.
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