Saturday, May 3, 2014

Same formula, same result

The Giants win another close contest against the Braves behind a strong start--this time from Ryan Vogelsong--and solo home runs. Michael Morse hit his second in two nights, this one a soaring fly ball to left-center, and both Buster Posey and Brandon Belt chipped in one apiece. The Giants had only four hits total (two by Buster) but they were the right kind of hits, and the bullpen kept the lid on to seal the victory. The Braves young pitcher, Julio Teheran, was impressive, but got burned by the long ball and lack of run support. I wonder what they call "Caining" in Atlanta.

Tim Lincecum worked hard last night, giving up six hits and three walks and needed 93 pitches to get 18 outs. Ryan Vogeslong gave up five hits and four walks in the same span, and needed 107 pitches to get the job done, and like Timmy only allowed one run. He labored, too, working a lot of long counts, but seemed to get stronger as the game went on and he picked up some big late strikeouts to shut down the Braves. The "tail end" of the Giants rotation has back-to-back quality outings and the team has taken advantage and picked up two big wins. Despite an error, Brandon Crawford once again made some very fine plays, taking away hits, none more impressive than the game-ender, a spinning, airborne scoop-and-throw on a grounder up the middle from his counterpart Andrelton Simmons.

Jean Machi threw four pitches in the 8th and got three outs, one coming on a lovely Brandon-to-Brandon-to-Brandon double play. With Sergio Romo being used both nights, and an early contest tomorrow, I imaging Bochy will shuffle the bullpen assignments a bit and go with Santiago Casilla and/or Javier Lopez in any late-and-close situations, neither of them were used tonight. Jeremy Affeldt looked good again but he was also used last night, so I expect Machi will be the first guy in relief if Madison Bumgarner can get things to the 7th inning.

Giants have a chance to sweep a first-place team in their home park. Go, team, go!


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