On the day that I’ll Have Another won the Preakness, the Giants screamed something nearer to, “Hey, one’s good enough for us!”
It certainly was for Ryan Vogelsong and their frontline relievers, who yielded just one hit to their cross-bay friends Saturday afternoon. Melky Cabrera lifted a sacrifice fly that snapped a scoreless tie in the seventh inning, and the Giants tacked on a few extra just in case.
Buster Posey ripped an impressive RBI double and Angel Pagan added a two-run single in the inning, and they continued their Peninsular mastery of the A’s in a 4-0 victory at AT&T Park on Saturday afternoon.
The A’s have dropped 11 in a row in games that count on the shores of McCovey Cove – a streak that began in 2008. The A’s are now proud owners of the second longest losing streak at AT&T Park. The New York Mets dropped 12 consecutive games at China Basin from 2000-03.
Starting pitching report
Vogelsong (2-2) was at his best. He seemed to barely break a sweat as he retired the first 13 hitters in order. When Seth Smith hit a soft single into shallow right field in the fifth inning, Vogelsong promptly erased him on a double-play grounder.
The only other baserunner came when Daric Barton led off the sixth with a walk. But then Vogelsong retired the next six hitters in order.
Vogelsong lowered his ERA to 2.27, including 1.32 in four starts at AT&T Park. He’s completed at least six innings in all seven starts, and has pitched at least seven innings in five of them.
Javier Lopez struck out two in a scoreless eighth inning. Clay Hensley issued a walk – making it a whole swollen three baserunners for the A’s in the ballgame – before getting a double-play grounder. Hensley managed to keep closer Santiago Casilla standing on the bullpen mound.
At the plate
The Giants advanced five runners into scoring position in the first six innings against A’s right-hander Tyson Ross, but couldn’t cash them in. Brandon Belt struck out to strand the bases loaded in the first inning and Brandon Crawford went fishing to strand two on the second.
But the bottom of the lineup started the winning rally in the seventh. Emmanuel Burriss reached on an infield single to shortstop and Vogelsong reached when he squared around to bunt and Ross buzzed him with an inside pitch.
Plate umpire James Hoye awarded first base to Vogelsong, who indicated he had been hit on the chest. A’s manager Bob Melvin, perhaps upset that Hoye didn’t get help from his umpires on the baselines, immediately came out to argue that the ball hit Vogelsong’s bat.
Gregor Blanco also showed bunt but reliever Grant Balfour threw four pitches out of the zone to load the bases. After Crawford struck out swinging at a 2-2 sinker, Cabrera lifted a sacrifice fly to snap the scoreless tie.
Then the Giants had another. Posey crushed a ball to the deepest part of right-center that one-hopped off the wall and into the stands for an automatic double, giving the club a 2-0 lead. Angel Pagan followed with a two-run single, extending his hitting streak to 10 games. Pagan has hit safely in 30 of his last 31 games and is 11 for 21 on the homestand.
In the field
It was a great day for double-play fetishists. Ross benefited from three of them and the A’s induced four in all. But the most impressive turn belonged to the Giants, when third baseman Joaquin Arias teamed with Burriss on a couple of quick transfers and accurate throws to end the fifth inning.
Melky Cabrera got the Giants defense started on a strong note when he left his feet to catch Jemile Weeks’ sinking line drive in the first inning.
The Giants announced 41,411 paid. The Giants, the A’s and the San Jose Convention and Visitors Bureau thank you for attending.
The Giants already clinched a winning homestand, but they could make it 5-2 if they can complete a sweep of this Bay Bridge series on Sunday. It’ll be Tim Lincecum against Bartolo Colon.