How does a team play five consecutive road games against two teams from the other league while spending every night at home? The Giants are about to find out.
The two-game series against the Mariners, postponed because of the air quality in Seattle, will instead be played Wednesday and Thursday at Oracle Park, with the Mariners acting as the home team for both games and batting last. The Giants will then drive across the Bay Bridge for three straight days for their second series with the A’s.
Wednesday’s game won’t be the first at Oracle Park with the Giants acting as the road team. A July 4, 2013 game in Cincinnati was postponed because of rain and the teams made it up as the second game of a doubleheader when the Reds visited later that month. The Giants batted first, scoring three times on hits by Pablo Sandoval and Hunter Pence. They held on for a 5-3 win, with Sergio Romo pitching the bottom of the ninth at Oracle Park.
(That was a much simpler time. The main gripe back then was that the Reds called off the July 4 game early and the skies cleared for good as the Giants were headed to the airport, although they weren’t too sad to be leaving Cincinnati. That was two days after Homer Bailey’s no-hitter.)
This will be the first time the Giants are the road team at Oracle Park for back-to-back games, and it’s part of what has become a hectic finishing stretch. Thursday was supposed to be the final off day of the season, but Tuesday ended up getting that designation, although it wasn’t that relaxing. The Giants woke up in the morning thinking they might still play and took a late-night flight back to the Bay Area.
The Giants will finish with 13 games in 12 days, including a doubleheader against the Padres at some point next weekend to make up for a game that was postponed last weekend by a false positive on a COVID-19 test. They have had three postponements this season for three very different reasons. A midweek game against the Dodgers was pushed back a day to protest systemic racism and police injustice.
“It’s one of the things that we’ve said since the beginning of the season, that we know there are going to be challenges and situations we haven’t had to deal with in seasons past,” manager Gabe Kapler said. “But we need to be good within the constructs of what the season hands us.”