Giants walk eight Pirates, fall 9-2 to lose series

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Giants walk eight Pirates, fall 9-2 to lose series

Aug. 10, 2011BOX SCORE GIANTS VIDEOMLB PAGE MLB SCOREBOARD
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- The Pirates showed up in San Francisco mired in a 10-game losing streak with little going right. In two weeks, they'd fallen from first place to 10 games out.Winning two from the reigning World Series champion Giants did a lot as Pittsburgh heads off to face NL Central-leading Milwaukee in an important matchup of division rivals.Andrew McCutchen hit a two-run homer, Jeff Karstens bounced back from his worst start of the season and the Pirates won their first series in three weeks with a 9-2 victory over the struggling Giants on Wednesday.
RELATED: Giants Insider gallery -- Wild Sanchez extends slump
Pittsburgh is off Thursday before opening a weekend series with the Brewers, who have won all five previous meetings."We'll find out after the Friday night game, but we're going in with some confidence," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "We were able to put a foot down and win a series on the road."Garrett Jones added an RBI single to continue his torrid August and help back Karstens (9-6), whose career-high nine strikeouts matched a season high for the team. Karstens, who ended a four-start winless stretch, gave up a season-high nine runs and nine hits in a 15-5 loss at San Diego last Friday."It's good for us, especially heading into Milwaukee," Karstens said.Pablo Sandoval homered for the Giants, who began the day with a half-game lead over Arizona in the NL West. The Diamondbacks host Houston in a night game. San Francisco has led the division since June 25.Jonathan Sanchez (4-7) walked McCutchen on four pitches and threw five straight balls to start the game. Sandoval came in from third and catcher Eli Whiteside hustled to the mound to chat with the left-hander, who was roughed up again in his second start since coming off the disabled list with biceps tendinitis. Sanchez was done after 4 1-3 innings and hasn't won since June 2 at St. Louis.McCutchen went 1 for 1 with three walks and a hit by pitch. He stole two bases and scored four runs - most by a Pirate in a game this year. His 16th clout of the year put Pittsburgh ahead 3-1 in the third. The Pirates have homered in four of their last five games and eight of 12.McCutchen was hit by a pitch leading off the seventh. Brandon Wood drove in a run that inning and Matt Diaz hit two run-scoring singles. Pittsburgh's Nos. 1-5 hitters went a combined 7 for 17 with six RBIs, eight runs scored, seven walks and a hit batter. Jones is batting .389 (14 for 36) with five doubles, three homers and seven RBIs this month.With a power show on offense of late, Bucs pitchers also have allowed 18 homers over the last nine games. Sandoval connected in the bottom of the first to tie the game at 1.
URBAN: Giants 'gripping' without Beltran
The Giants have hit 19 straight solo home runs, matching the 1914 Phillies' major league mark. Their last homer to score more than one run was a two-run drive by Nate Schierholtz on July 6 against San Diego.San Francisco finished up a disappointing 3-7 homestand with its 10th loss in 13 games. The Giants have dropped three straight series at AT&T Park for the first time since losing six consecutive home series from May 12-June 18, 2008."We've got a lot of baseball left," outfielder Cody Ross said. "We've got to go out and play like champions. We're not doing it. We're kind of all in a rut and it seems like we can't dig ourselves out. We've got to do something."Giants manager Bruce Bochy said the front office would discuss whether to stick with Sanchez. Lefty Barry Zito had been unimpressive in the fifth starter role and went back on the disabled list Aug. 1, but he could come off when San Francisco needs that pitcher again Aug. 16 in Atlanta."It has me a little concerned," Bochy said of the No. 5 spot. "We need that guy to help us win a ballgame, too. We haven't had a good start there in I don't know how many now."Pirates first baseman Derrek Lee was a late scratch from the lineup with a recurring left hand injury. Hurdle said Lee's hand was very sore after he played the two previous nights following a four-game absence with the bruised hand. Lee was hit with a pitch from Chicago's Carlos Marmol last Wednesday.Lee is batting .278 with two home runs and three RBIs in four games since joining the Pirates in a trade from Baltimore.NOTES: Giants RF Carlos Beltran missed his third straight game nursing a strained right hand and wrist. Schierholtz was held out with a right hip flexor. ... Zito will make another rehab outing Saturday for Triple-A Fresno then fly out to join the Giants on the road. ... San Francisco INF Miguel Tejada (lower abdominal strain) isn't quite ready to begin a rehab outing in the minors, Bochy said. Tejada will travel on the road trip. ... Pirates RHP Kevin Hart had arthroscopic cleanup surgery Tuesday performed by Dr. James Andrews in Pensacola, Fla. The team hopes to have Hart ready by spring training. ... Pirates LHP Paul Maholm (6-12, 3.54 ERA) starts Friday trying to end a string of three straight losing decisions. He is 1-5 on the road and is coming off a 13-2 loss Saturday at San Diego. ... All-Star RHP Matt Cain goes for the Giants on Friday at Florida, trying to improve to 4-1 for his career vs. the Marlins. He lost to Florida on May 24.

Kelly: Lynch expected back vs. Jets

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Kelly: Lynch expected back vs. Jets

Outside linebacker Aaron Lynch has missed give games with a high-ankle sprain and still appears to be restricted while moving in pre-practice drills.

But 49ers coach Chip Kelly said Friday morning on his radio show on KNBR that he anticipates Lynch will be able to get back on the field Sunday against the New York Jets for just his fourth game of the season.

Kelly was asked about why the 49ers have not promoted outside linebacker Marcus Rush from the practice squad. Rush led the 49ers with six sacks in the exhibition season. His best game came against the Denver Broncos, beating former Nevada tackle Kyle Roberts for three sacks. Roberts is not on an NFL roster or practice squad.

“We haven’t had an opportunity at outside linebacker,” Kelly said. “We didn’t put Aaron on IR, and we anticipate getting Aaron back this week. So we really don’t have a spot at that position he plays.

“If we were to lose a player at outside linebacker, then we’d certainly think about activating him. But we ahven’t lost an outside linebacker, so we still have Ahmad Brooks, Eli Harold, Tank Carradine and Aaron. We carry four outside linebackers on our team. Aaron’s been out for a little bit here with his ankle, but it wasn’t a season-ending injury, so we just really don’t have a spot for him.”

Lynch has one sack in three games this season. He was suspended for the first four games of the season for violating the league’s policy on substances of abuse. He has not returned to action since sustaining an ankle sprain in the Oct. 23 game against Tampa Bay.

Cooper 'didn't stumble,' NBC says incompletion didn't hit camera cable

Cooper 'didn't stumble,' NBC says incompletion didn't hit camera cable

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Raiders quarterback Derek Carr had pass rushers all around, but evaded them just long enough for Amari Cooper to do his thing.

He put an extra move on Marcus Peters and came free over the top. Carr saw his favorite target wide open, stepped up amid the chaos and let it fly. His volley went skyward, and Cooper veered right, tracking it as gravity brought the ball back. The pass ended up falling left, too far for Cooper to catch it.

“That’s a play we typically make,” Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio said Thursday. “We didn’t make it tonight.”

The Raiders were down 21-13 in the fourth quarter when that opportunity came about. Neither team scored again, and that result moved Kansas City over the Raiders and atop the AFC West.

There were other chances to score, including a long drive that stalled at the Kansas City 19-yard line with two minutes remaining. The deep incompletion came on 3rd-and-7 on the Raiders’ penultimate series, and a missed connection proved costly in their comeback efforts.

The whole exchange was uncharacteristic. Cooper doesn’t believe he misread the pass or took a false step to his right. He said it altered course at the worst time.

“I didn’t stumble,” Cooper said. “The ball, as it was coming down, moved at the last minute. That’s why it looked like I might have stumbled. I was running in the right direction and it kind of moved inside at the last minute, and I didn’t have time to get it.”

That has led many on social media to claim Carr’s pass hit a cable supporting a Skycam, a mobile camera that gets aerial shots during a game. The technology uses a series of cables to give the camera free motion over the field.

There is no conclusive video to show whether a ball hit the cable. Carr’s pass leaves the frame and doesn’t come back into view until it’s already off course.

NBC is certain the camera didn’t play a role in one of many missed opportunities to complete a comeback and beat the Chiefs.

“The camera is always behind the play and cables are really high over the surface,” NBC executive producer Fred Gaudelli said in an email to Deadspin. “Look at the replay we showed from sky cam - if anything hits the wire it would effect a bump in the camera and you would see that on the air.”

Punts have hit camera cables before, and NFL rules mandate a down be replayed if interference occurs.

The NFL mandates the camera always be behind the play. On the third down in question, the camera was in the Raiders backfield as it should’ve been.

There’s no solid evidence that the ball hit a cable, it’s entirely possible Carr’s pass simply went awry. The typically accurate quarterback struggled with touch all night, and never found the passing rhythm characteristic of his MVP-caliber season.

Arrowhead Stadium often has unpredictable wind gusts that could’ve changed trajectory upon descent. No Raiders or official questioned the play at the time, which fell harmlessly incomplete when the Raiders needed a big play.

To see the replay in slow motion, click here.