MLB Giants seek bounce-back win over Reds as tensions rise


The visiting San Francisco Giants will try to rebound Saturday from Friday’s 5-1 loss to the Cincinnati Reds in which much of the news didn’t happen during the game.

Giants manager Gabe Kapler forgot to put reliever Jake McGee, activated from the injured list, on the lineup card he exchanged before the game, making him ineligible to play.

Kapler also announced he would not take the field for the national anthem “until I feel better about the direction of our country.” Kapler’s comment comes as a protest in the wake of this week’s deadly mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.

Then, Cincinnati’s Tommy Pham and San Francisco’s Joc Pederson had an on-field confrontation — reportedly over a fantasy football league dispute — that resulted in the emptying of both bullpens. No punches were thrown, and order was quickly restored.

“We’re investigating it and learning as much as we can about the incident,” Kapler said. “We’re taking it very seriously and learning as much as I and we can, and as quickly as we can.”

The Reds pulled Pham from their lineup as Major League Baseball investigates the incident while Pederson was allowed to play.

The Giants, who have lost eight of 12, will send left-hander Alex Wood (3-3, 4.82 ERA) against his former team in the second game of the three-game weekend series.

Wood was just 1-3 with a 5.80 ERA in seven starts with the Reds in 2019, his only season in Cincinnati.

Wood went to Cincinnati in December 2018, when the Dodgers traded the southpaw to the Reds, along with Matt Kemp, Yasiel Puig, Kyle Farmer, and cash considerations for Homer Bailey, Jeter Downs, and Josiah Gray. Wood suffered a back injury in spring training and missed most of the 2019 season on the disabled list.

Wood returned to the Dodgers in 2020 and won a World Series before signing with the Giants in 2021 and posting a 10-4 mark with a 3.83 ERA in 26 starts.

The 32-year-old is 3-1 with a 3.82 ERA in six career appearances — five starts — against the Reds.

Winners of three straight, the Reds will counter with right-hander Vladimir Gutierrez (0-6, 8.70), who gave up four runs on four hits with five strikeouts and two walks in a 7-4 loss to the Cubs on Monday in his last start.

Before Friday’s game, the Reds optioned veteran infielder Colin Moran and right-handed pitcher Jared Solomon to Triple-A Louisville, activating lefty Ross Detwiler from the bereavement list and promoting right-hander Graham Ashcraft’s from Louisville to make Friday’s start.

Left-hander Justin Wilson (left elbow) also was transferred to the 60-day injured list.

Moran was batting just .202 in 34 games this season but received regular playing time filling in at first base while Joey Votto was on the COVID list. Moran hit four home runs with 15 RBIs and seven runs scored in starting 15 straight games.

“He’s going to go to Triple-A and hopefully play a lot,” Reds manager David Bell said Friday. “We kind of ran out of time for him to get playing time with some guys coming back. What a guy. A true, true professional. Just a really great, authentic person. The team really appreciated Colin and really liked him a lot, so we’ll miss him. He couldn’t have handled everything better.”

Solomon was sent down with a 0-0 record and a 3.86 ERA in five appearances. He allowed three hits, two walks and struck out six in 4 2/3 innings.

–Field Level Media


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