Bumgarner gets run support, Giants beat D'backs

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Bumgarner gets run support, Giants beat D'backs

June 15, 2011BOX SCORE GIANTS VIDEOMLB PAGE MLB SCOREBOARD

PHOENIX (AP) To a man, the San Francisco Giants were intent on giving Madison Bumgarner the outcome he deserved.Then the reigning World Series champs followed through, providing the Giants' talented young left-hander with enough run support for a change to help him pitch the Giants past the Arizona Diamondbacks 5-2 Wednesday night."He's been pitching so good I was embarrassed today to see that he has nine consecutive quality starts and 2-5 to show for it," Giants teammate Pat Burrell said. "That's embarrassing to us as an offense. We didn't exactly blow them out but we got enough for him. That's what it's all about."Bumgarner (3-8) gave up two runs on five hits and struck out six in six innings.Willie Bloomquist and Chris Young hit solo home runs, ending Bumgarner's 10-start string without allowing a homer. But that was about all the Diamondbacks could muster against the 21-year-old Bumgarner, who entered the game with the fifth-worst support in the majors (2.65 runs per game)."It's kind of funny. I feel not much different than the last few games when it's been the other way around," Bumgarner said. "I feel like I've thrown some better games before today and lost. Today it was a battle. But I feel good about it."Arizona had runners at first and second with two outs in the ninth, but Brian Wilson retired pinch-hitter Juan Miranda on a grounder for his 20th save in 22 chances.Bill Hall singled home the go-ahead run in the sixth with his first hit since joining the Giants four days ago and later doubled. The Giants beat Arizona for the fifth straight time,"The last five games against them they have made the plays when it has counted," Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson said. "We have been in the games and they have responded better than we have. We had our opportunities to get guys in. I think we were 0-5 with runners in scoring position and we left seven on. We had opportunities in the first, sixth and seventh and didn't get them in."Joe Saunders (3-7) allowed three runs and threw a season-high 115 pitches in seven innings for Arizona.San Francisco scored two insurance runs off closer J.J. Putz in the ninth. Eli Whiteside tripled home Hall and scored on a wild pitch.Aubrey Huff singled twice, drove in a run and scored for the Giants, who are 7-1 against Arizona this season with one to play in this three-game series.In the Arizona eighth, Kelly Johnson tried to score what would have been the tying run from first on Young's double down the left-field line. Aaron Rowand, who had shifted from center field to right in the seventh, threw to shortstop Miguel Tejada, whose relay home was in plenty of time for the catcher Whiteside to apply the tag."What a quick release and strong throw, right on the money," manager Bruce Bochy said. "A ball down the line and they had speed on the base. You know he's going and it takes perfect execution to get it done, and we had it from both guys."Gibson praised the way the Giants made the play."In that situation Rowand made a really good play on it," Gibson said. "He went into the corner and it looked like the ball popped right up to him. They made a picture-perfect relay play."Huff singled with one out in the sixth, then Pat Burrell walked to set up Hall's RBI hit. Moments later, Hall was called for interference going into second base, a ruling that resulted in an inning-ending double play.The Giants scored in the first after a double play erased Aaron Rowand's leadoff single. Pablo Sandoval singled, Cody Ross walked and Huff singled.Bloomquist, hitless in his previous 12 at bats, hit Bumgarner's 2-0 pitch just over the left-field wall for his second home run of the season to tie it at 1 in the third. It was the first home run the Giants' lefty has allowed in 67 innings.San Francisco quickly regained the lead 2-1 when Ross led off the fourth with a double and scored when Burrell tripled off the Arizona bullpen fence down the left-field line. It was his first triple in two seasons.Young homer also barely cleared the left-field fence to tie it at 2 in the fourth.NOTES: Bumgarner had not allowed a home run since a solo shot by Arizona's Justin Upton's at Chase Field on April 17. ... After the enclosed structure was cooled by air conditioning, the Chase Field roof was opened just before the first pitch even though it was 106 degrees outside. ... Arizona's Xavier Nady struck out four times. ... Bumgarner's three victories all have come on the road. ... All eight games between the Diamondbacks and Giants have been decided by three runs or fewer. ... The Giants are 14-5 against left-handed starters.

A's spring training Day 8: Top pick AJ Puk attracts a crowd

A's spring training Day 8: Top pick AJ Puk attracts a crowd

MESA, Ariz. — The A’s are excited about 2016 top pick A.J. Puk, that much was apparent by the crowd the lefty attracted for his first “live” bullpen session Tuesday.

Among those watching closely were executive vice president of baseball operations Billy Beane, general manager David Forst, manager Bob Melvin and pitching coach Curt Young.

Puk, who shaved about 20 pounds off his 6-foot-7 frame over the winter, looked strong against a group of hitters that included touted infield prospects Franklin Barreto and Yairo Munoz.

Melvin in particular liked the way Puk, the No. 6 overall pick out of the University of Florida, worked his curve ball into the mix. That’s a pitch he hadn’t used since high school, but he dusted it off back in the fall instructional league with some encouragement from minor league pitching coordinator Gil Patterson, and he’s working to sharpen it this spring as a complement to his fastball, slider and changeup.

“It’s just nice to have another pitch that’s slower than my other three pitches,” Puk said before Tuesday’s workout.

“It’s a four-pitch mix,” Melvin said. “He’s really starting to distinguish between this slider and curve ball. It was quite a crowd around his cage too. When you’re a young kid you tend to notice that, but I thought he responded really well.”

Puk, 21, is rooming with shortstop Richie Martin, a teammate at Florida whom the A’s made their top pick in 2015. They also lived near each other in Tampa this offseason and worked out together.

Puk comes off very quiet upon meeting him, but Martin warns against being fooled.

“It takes him a while, but once he feels comfortable he’ll break out. You’ll see.”

Melvin was impressed with Puk’s physical shape, saying he’s fielded his position well in pitchers’ fielding drills.

CAMP BATTLE Jesse Hahn will start the A’s Cactus League opener Saturday against the defending World Series champion Chicago Cubs. It’ll be a chance for Hahn to make an early impression in his bid for the fifth starter spot.

“After the year he had (in 2016), it’s important for him this year. We have to show some faith in him,” Melvin said. “He performed well for us the year before. Last year wasn’t really consistent. We’ll try to get him out there and get him off to a good start.”

Kendall Graveman will take the ball in Sunday’s spring home opener against the Angels. Sonny Gray and Sean Manaea both will pitch Monday against the Giants and Jharel Cotton and Andrew Triggs will be among the group throwing Tuesday against the Indians.

PROSPECT WATCH: Sean Murphy, the A’s third-round pick in June, has shown a very strong throwing arm early in camp. Is it any wonder Melvin, an ex-catcher, was impressed?

“The kid can throw, it’s special,” Melvin said. “We really like him.”

NOTEWORTHY: Still no word on when reliever Santiago Casilla will arrive at camp from the Dominican Republic. Melvin said he isn’t concerned at this stage, and noted that Casilla has been working out at the team’s complex in the Dominican Republic and gave a motivational talk to the younger players there.

Cousins thanks Sacramento: 'Wouldn't trade it for anything'

Cousins thanks Sacramento: 'Wouldn't trade it for anything'

The Kings traded DeMarcus Cousins to the New Orleans Pelicans on Monday, prompting the All-Star big man to post a heartfelt message on his Instagram account.

Words can't even express how hard it is for me to have to leave the city of Sacramento and all of the amazing people that I have met while out here. I gave it my all for you and you gave it right back. The most amazing fans on the planet and I just want you to know that your support has meant everything to me. It's hard to believe that it was seven years ago that this young kid from Alabama showed up in Sacramento scared and not knowing a soul. As I look back upon my time here, I wouldn't trade it for anything. I have met so many amazing people, many of whom went out of their way to make me feel right at home from day one. Each and every one of you have played such an important part in my life and helping me become the person I am today. I don't just consider you all as fans, you all are my family...and a couple thousand miles aren't going to change a thing. Thank you Sacramento. 
#LoyaltyisLove #sactownkingforever

Cousins, 26, averaged 27.8 points, 10.7 rebounds, 4.9 assists, 1.4 steals, 1.3 blocks and 34.4 minutes per game for the Kings this year.

Words can't even express how hard it is for me to have to leave the city of Sacramento and all of the amazing people that I have met while out here. I gave it my all for you and you gave it right back. The most amazing fans on the planet and I just want you to know that your support has meant everything to me. It's hard to believe that it was seven years ago that this young kid from Alabama showed up in Sacramento scared and not knowing a soul. As I look back upon my time here, I wouldn't trade it for anything. I have met so many amazing people, many of whom went out of their way to make me feel right at home from day one. Each and every one of you have played such an important part in my life and helping me become the person I am today. I don't just consider you all as fans, you all are my family...and a couple thousand miles aren't going to change a thing. Thank you Sacramento. #LoyaltyisLove

A post shared by DeMarcus Cousins (@boogiecousins) on