Giants bullpen bends, doesn't break vs. Phils

Giants bullpen bends, doesn't break vs. Phils

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants' relievers didn't record their cleanest effort Wednesday. But they were effective nonetheless.

Of the four pitchers that left the bullpen to appear in San Francisco's 6-5 victory over Philadelphia in Game 4 of the National League Championship Series, three were either charged with runs or allowed inherited baserunners to score. Only Brian Wilson, who worked the ninth and earned the decision, emerged unscathed.

"It's not the way you draw it up, that you'd want it to work out," left-hander Javier Lopez said. "But it did work out. That's the most important thing you take away from this game."

Indeed, even the relievers who got nicked up distinguished themselves to some extent.


Santiago Casilla, who relieved starter Madison Bumgarner in the fifth inning with two on and two out, surrendered a two-run double and flung a run-scoring wild pitch to fuel Philadelphia's four-run uprising. It was a humbling effort for Casilla, who permitted just six of 47 inherited runners to score this year.

But with runners on second and third and Philadelphia bidding for an even bigger inning, Casilla struck out Jimmy Rollins to end the fifth. Casilla then pitched a 1-2-3 sixth.

"I thought that was huge," manager Bruce Bochy said of Casilla's stint. "Same with Romo."

That would be Sergio Romo, the right-hander who allowed three runs in two-thirds of an inning in two Division Series appearances against Atlanta. This time, Romo surrendered Jayson Werth's RBI double after Lopez yielded Ryan Howard's eighth-inning leadoff double.

Lopez struck out Howard in both of their previous LCS confrontations. This time, the Phillies first baseman drove a 3-2 fastball to left-center field.

"He worked the count on me today," Lopez said. "It was a great at-bat, a great battle. He's not a former MVP for no reason."

However, that followed a scoreless seventh inning by Lopez, who entered the game having retired all seven batters he had faced in the postseason. And Romo did his part by stranding Werth at second base. Romo concluded the eighth in dynamic fashion by striking out Ben Francisco and Carlos Ruiz.

Asked what helped him prevent trouble from escalating after Werth doubled, Romo replied, "Thinking about my teammates. They're the ones fighting, fighting, fighting. Why can't I fight alongside them?"

Chris Haft is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.