Giants 4, Mariners 2
When Ryan Vogelsong takes the mound, one of his goals is to try
and match what teammate Matt Cain did before him in San Francisco’s
Good luck trying to match a perfect game.
”I told him before the game that I’m trying to keep up with him
and he’s making it tough. He’s not making it easy,” Vogelsong
Helped by homers from Buster Posey and National League hitting
leader Melky Cabrera, Vogelsong won his sixth straight decision on
Friday night, and the Giants opened a three-game interleague series
with a 4-2 win over the slumping Seattle Mariners.
Posey led off the second inning with a solo home run into the
second deck of the left field seats, and Cabrera added a two-run
shot in the eighth inning that proved to be more important than it
first appeared. The Giants have now clubbed eight homers in their
last four games, although this is unlikely to be a continued run of
slugging from a team not known for its power hitting.
Posey turned on a hanging offspeed pitch from Seattle starter
Jason Vargas (7-6) for his eighth homer of the season, a 386-foot
shot that landed in the first row of seats in the second deck above
the Giants bullpen. Cabrera’s sixth homer of the season didn’t have
the majestic arc of Posey’s, but cleared the fence in left-center
field by about a foot as Franklin Gutierrez was unable to chase it
”I think they just seem to come in bunches. It’s just the way
that it goes,” Posey said.
Few will ever match what Cain did with his 14 strikeouts in
throwing the 22nd perfect game in baseball history on Wednesday
against Houston. But to a lesser extent, Vogelsong was awfully good
on Friday night even when he didn’t have his best stuff.
Vogelsong took a shutout into the seventh inning and allowed
just two hits before surrendering a pair of singles to Dustin
Ackley and Miguel Olivo to begin the eighth. Before that, Vogelsong
had retired 11 straight and given up just a pair of doubles to
Jesus Montero and Olivo earlier in the game.
More importantly, the last eight times Vogelsong has gone to the
mound, the Giants have come away with victories. Vogelsong is now
5-0 in his last seven road starts and only once in his last nine
starts has he given up more than two earned runs.
His last loss came on May 3 against Miami.
”What you like about him is he keeps his composure out there,
even with the walks, he continues to grind it out and make
pitches,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.
Vogelsong struck out six and walked three. He left after giving
up a pair of hits to Dustin Ackley and Olivo to start the eighth,
snapping a streak of 11 straight batters retired. Reliever Javier
Lopez was greeted by a single from pinch-hitter Casper Wells to
load the bases. Ichiro Suzuki hit a grounder that bounced off
Lopez’s glove and to shortstop Joaquin Arias, who got a force out
at second base, but Ackley scored on the play. Lopez was replaced
by Sergio Romo, who got Franklin Gutierrez to ground out to Pablo
Sandoval at third on a ball that probably should have been a double
play and allowed Olvio to score. Romo then got Kyle Seager to
ground out to end the rally.
Santiago Casilla pitched the ninth for his 18th save in 19
”I said to these guys last year I didn’t want to be the weak
link in the rotation,” Vogelsong said. ”I’m just trying to go out
there and feed off of them.”
Joaquin Arias drove in San Francisco’s other run with a
sacrifice fly in the fourth that scored Angel Pagan. But there were
plenty of other chances for the Giants, who hammered Vargas for 10
hits. It was the most hits allowed this season by Vargas, who had
allowed nine hits in his previous two starts. Vargas has lost his
last two starts.
”He kept us in it. We’re struggling on offense here right now,
but he deserved to be out there late,” Seattle manager Eric Wedge
said of Vargas. ”He was doing a good job controlling the
Notes: Giants’ RHP Tim Lincecum, who grew up in the Seattle
suburbs and was a star in college at Washington, will take the
Safeco Field mound for the first time on Saturday night trying to
stop a personal five-game losing streak. Lincecum has not won since
April 28. … Seattle dropped Ackley to seventh in the batting
order for the first time this season. Wedge said he wanted to
balance the top of his order and not be so left-handed hitting
heavy. … Giants’ 1B Brandon Belt saw his consecutive games with a
homer streak end at three.