Thursday, May 26, 2011

Giants update: Anemic offense spoils gem by Ryan Vogelsong

Anemic offense spoils Vogelsong's gem As if the news on Buster Posey weren't depressing enough, the Giants and their anemic offense added more misery to the day. They were shut out 1-0 by Florida's Anibal Sanchez on five hits Thursday, which completed a three-game Marlins sweep. The Giants squandered another solid outing by Ryan Vogelsong (3-1), who gave up just one earned run over a career-high eight innings but took his first loss of the year. The result didn't set well with manager Bruce Bochy, 

who is clearly losing his patience with the offensive woes. "What a job Vogelsong did," Bochy said. "You'd like to think you're going to find a way to score a run, and we had some pretty good opportunities. We just need somebody to come through and a big hit for us, but it didn't happen." The Giants' best opportunity to score came in the first inning, when they put runners on first and second with one out, but Aubrey Huff hit into a double play. The club never had more than one base runner in an inning the rest of the day. "We had the right guys up there," Bochy said. "We have to start coming through here. We can't keep living on the edge." Huff, who went 0 for 4 and saw his average dip to .215, accepted much of the blame for the defeat. "I've always been a slow starter, but this is getting kind of ridiculous, especially on a team where we're scuffling to drive in runs," Huff said. "The way Vogey pitched, it's just unacceptable to get a loss out of a game like that, and it's happened so many times this year already, and I'm a big part of the problem." Huff said even on the hit that contributed to the Giants' four-run rally Wednesday night, he didn't make great contact. "I'm just not seeing the ball and picking it up very well," he said. "It seems like everything seems like a strike to me right now. I can't put my finger on it." The Giants had just three other instances where they put runners in scoring position against Sanchez, who also pitched a shutout the last time he faced the Giants last July. Aaron Rowand had a one-out double in the second but never advanced. Manny Burriss singled and stole second in the third, but Freddy Sanchez struck out. Finally, Sanchez doubled with one out in the ninth, but Huff and Cody Ross grounded out to end the game. Bochy said he believes Huff is pressing but added that he may not be able to afford to be patient with him anymore. "Not to pinpoint any player, but he's the guy who's hitting in the heart of the order, No. 3 or No. 4," Bochy said. "Those are guys you depend on to drive in runs, and we've got to pick that up, especially with Buster gone. Hopefully, we can find someone to fill that void." Vogelsong lamented the 0-2 pitch to Logan Morrison in the sixth that provided the only run of the game after Chris Coghlan had opened the inning with a double and been sacrificed to third. Morrison's single scored Coghlan. "At the end, the line looks good, but it's tough giving up an 0-2 hit and costing you the game," Vogelsong said. "It stings a little bit. I was just trying to go up out of the zone trying to get him to chase. It was up, it just wasn't up high enough." The Giants called up Brandon Belt, catcher Chris Stewart and shortstop Brandon Crawford to replace Posey, Mike Fontenot (groin strain) and Darren Ford (ankle sprain), all of whom were put on the disabled list. Only Stewart played Thursday, coming in as a pinch runner in the eighth and then catching the ninth.

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