Ryan Vogelsong struck out eight batters in his five innings of work. Hunter Strickland got the next two frames and went six-up six-down with three strikeouts. Sergio Romo added two more in the 8th and Santiago Casilla tacked on one in the 9th for a team total of 14 whiffs. Vogie had to work hard, issuing four walks and throwing 94 pitches, but he brought some serious heat and went after the Nationals with élan. He kept attacking the zone, getting 13 foul ball strikes to go with his 17 called strikes and 12 swinging strikes, and the Washington lineup never got it going against him. Strickland followed him with overpowering stuff--both he and Romo made them look silly. Casilla, thankfully, got the save without too much trouble. Let's hope his struggles are behind him. It was a dominating performance by the staff and it nailed down a big win.
Gregor Blanco sparked two rallies that led to two runs. Blanco is often overlooked and I think he's a key contributor. In much the same way Vogie is under-appreciated and I love it when those guys show their mettle. The Giants scored two in the bottom of the first after Yunel Escobar led off the game with a homer. It stayed 2-1 until the 7th when the Giants added an insurance run. The 3-1 final got sweetened a bit with the Dodgers losing at home to the Reds to cut the deficit to 2-1/2 games.
Matt Cain matches up with über-ace Max Scherzer tomorrow night.