Giants' offense nonexistent, blanked by Astros 6-0

August 20, 2011, 2:29 am
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HOUSTON (AP) -- The San Francisco Giants' slump has gotten so bad they are even losing to the Houston Astros.Wandy Rodriguez pitched eight innings and had a two-run single to lead the Astros to a 6-0 victory over the slumping Giants on Friday night.The Giants have lost 15 of their last 21 games including four of the last five."We've talked, and we're working," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "You just have to keep going. You always have to think it's just temporary and that you will come out of it, and we will."The Astros have won three straight but their 41-84 record is the worst in the major leagues.The Giants are trying to overcome injuries and had the added problem Friday night of facing Rodriguez when he was in control of all his pitches."He's got that curveball that he can do a lot of different things with," Giants third baseman Mark DaRosa said. "Honestly, he is probably the one pitcher in baseball that can really control his curveball as good as he does."He can pretty much put it where he wants; in, out, upstairs, down and he works in that fastball that always has a little life on it."The Astros were leading 2-0 in the sixth inning when Carlos Corporan hit an RBI single with two outs and Rodriguez followed with a long single down the right field line on the first pitch from Ryan Vogelsong (10-3)."Wandy was absolutely outstanding," Astros manager Brad Mills said. "He just threw the ball real well. It's nice to see him be able to use all of his pitches and he was able to keep them off balance, obviously, all night, which was good."Rodriguez (9-9) allowed five hits, struck out eight and walked two. It was his third eight-inning performance of the season."I tried to locate my fastball early in the game and late I used my breaking ball," Rodriguez said.Brian Bogusevic, who hit a walkoff grand slam against Chicago on Tuesday, made it 6-0 with a homer off Guillermo Mota in the eighth.It was the Astro's fourth shutout of the season and their first since June 30 against Texas.Vogelsong had won four of his previous five decisions. He pitched seven innings, allowed four hits, two earned runs and walked four with three strikeouts.The Astros struck first in the third. Clint Barmes walked to start the inning and Corporan doubled before J.S. Shuck doubled down the right field line to make it 2-0.Vogelsong walked the bases loaded in the fifth inning but escaped when J.D. Martinez took a called third strike.Rodriguez escaped a two-on, two-outs close call in the second when Mike Fontenot hit a single to right fielder Bogusevic, who made a clean throw to the plate for the tag on Aubrey Huff.Rodriguez threw 110 pitches, 72 for strikes, and acknowledged he tired in the final two innings."I was honest with him that I was a little tired," Rogriguez said. "I told him I could go back out there but he said it was OK."DaRosa is tired of talking. He wants results."We've had our share of meetings, I mean you can talk all you want; talk is cheap," he said. "Until you go out there and put up some solid approaches find ways to score runs it doesn't matter what it looks like."Notes: San Francisco has a 27-15 record at Minute Maid Park, the best of any major league team. The Giants lead the majors with a 32-0 record in games they led by three or more runs. INF Jeff Keppinger returned to Minute Maid Park for the first time since the Astros traded him to the Giants in July. He popped out as a pinch-hitter in the eighth The Giants have used the DL 21 times this season. The Astros are first in the NL and fourth in the majors with 240 doubles. OF George Springer, the Astros No. 1 draft pick, took batting practice before the game. "I just didn't want to miss the first pitch," he said. He didn't. With family looking on, he drove a fly to deep right field.

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