PHILADELPHIA -- Santiago Casilla made no secret of the fact he wanted to remain this team's closer after the trade deadline. The Giants made no secret of the fact they were looking for a new closer anyway.
Well, Monday came and went and the Giants added a left-handed starter, a left-handed reliever, and a utility infielder. But Casilla remained the closer, and last night might have been his best night of the season. Casilla entered with the winning run on third and easily got out of the jam with a pop-up and strikeout. He then pitched a scoreless 10th. Casilla quietly has converted 12 of his last 13 save opportunities, and he has gotten Bruce Bochy out of some tight late-game spots.
"He's done a terrific job, hasn't he?" Bochy said. "He saved us again. He's been throwing the ball really well."
Did the trade rumors help Casilla lock in?
"It certainly seems that way, that he's trying to make a statement that that's his job," Bochy said. "He really has elevated his game. I know he had to hear rumors but we're confident with the way he's throwing the ball. It's good to see guys doing what he's doing: 'Hey, I'll show you.'"
As for the rest of the bullpen, Bochy hasn't said it, but you can expect some changes in the order. Sergio Romo has given up eight hits in his last five appearances, leading to five runs, and Derek Law and Hunter Strickland are available after getting one day off (they had pitched four straight). Law seems the likely candidate for the eighth, with Will Smith joining him. He was much better last night in his second appearance.
--- Bochy met with Eduardo Núñez this morning to let him know that he's not being benched in any way. He will mostly be the third baseman.
"He made a couple of errors but geez, he's getting acclimated here and he'll get more comfortable with more playing time," Bochy said. "The guy made the All-Star team. He has a lot of talent. We got a nice player here and I think when all is said and done, we'll see it."
--- Joe Panik is 2-for-23 since coming off the DL and he'll likely be off tomorrow. But for today, Bochy said he "needs to swing his way out of this." Panik has lined out a couple of times in this series, so he's not far away.
--- Trevor Brown catches Matt Moore's debut because of the long game last night and the day-game-after-night-game thing.
--- If you missed it yesterday, here's my story about how the homegrown infield reacted to losing Matt Duffy.