Giants face rookie Lynn in finale vs. St. Louis


Giants face rookie Lynn in finale vs. St. Louis

June 2, 2011

GIANTS (30-25) vs.
ST. LOUIS (33-24)

Coverage begins at 4:30 P.M. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- In what's fast becoming an everyday occurrence, the St. Louis Cardinals are adding to a crowded injured list.

Having already lost pitcher Kyle McClellan, the Cardinals are expected to put slugger Matt Holliday on the 15-day disabled list before looking to split a four-game set with the San Francisco Giants on Thursday.

Holliday, who leads the NL with a .342 average, will be sidelined with a injured quadriceps. He returned from a week-long absence and went 1 for 4 in Monday's 7-3 loss to the Giants, but was a pinch-hitter in a 4-3 win Tuesday.

Allen Craig and Jon Jay should get the bulk of the playing time in left field during Holliday's absence. Craig is hitting .337 with four homers and 21 RBIs, while Jay is batting .342 with four homers and 14 RBIs.

Lance Berkman likely will bat fourth in place of Holliday despite an 0-for-12 slump that's dropped his average to .329.

McClellan, a converted reliever who's second on the Cardinals with six wins, was put on the DL Wednesday, two days after straining a hip flexor.

"At some point we were going to have to probably slow him down anyway, and this is just a nice opportunity to do that," general manager John Mozeliak said.

St. Louis also is without catcher Gerald Laird (finger) and infielder Nick Punto (arm). Ace Adam Wainwright is lost for the season after elbow surgery.

Lance Lynn will make his major league debut for the NL Central-leading Cardinals (33-24) in the finale. The right-hander was 5-3 with a 4.06 ERA in 10 starts at Triple-A Memphis and a 13-game winner last season for the Redbirds.

RELATED: Lynn to make MLB debut Thursday vs. Giants

San Francisco's Jonathan Sanchez (3-3, 3.38 ERA) will be in search of his first win in three weeks. The left-hander is 0-1 with 2.70 ERA in three starts since beating Arizona on April 11.

Facing Milwaukee on Saturday, Sanchez allowed two runs and two hits with four walks over seven innings, but the Giants fell 3-2 on a suicide squeeze in the ninth.

Sanchez has had trouble locating the strike zone on the road, where he's issued 23 of his 34 walks.

He won his only career start against the Cardinals at Busch Stadium, allowing two hits with four walks and five strikeouts in five scoreless innings of the Giants' 8-2 victory on April 20, 2008.

He failed to register a decision in his home debut against the Cardinals. Sanchez yielded one run and four hits over five innings as the Giants went on to a 5-4 win in 12 on April 8.

After the teams split the first two games, Nate Schierholtz made the difference in San Francisco's 7-5, 11-inning win Wednesday.

His RBI single with two outs in the ninth made it 5-all. With one out in the 11th, Schierholtz drove in Freddy Sanchez with the go-ahead run and later scored on rookie Brandon Crawford's single.

REWIND: Shierholtz the hero in Giants win over Cardinals

"His playing time has increased and it will now with the game he had and the way he's been playing," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said of Schierholtz.

With two outs in the bottom of the inning, the game was delayed 16 minutes after two light standards failed. When play resumed, Brian Wilson needed one pitch to get Craig to ground out and notch his 15th save.

Schierholtz tied a season high with three hits, and Cody Ross had third four-hit game this season for the Giants.

Craig's two-run homer in the seventh inning off a struggling Tim Lincecum gave St. Louis a 5-4 lead. Jay struck out three times.

Bumgarner throws three innings of no-hit ball in first rehab start

Bumgarner throws three innings of no-hit ball in first rehab start


Madison Bumgarner was back on the bump Sunday night in a Giants jersey for the first time since being placed on the DL due to a dirt bike accident on April 21.

Bumgarner took the mound for the Arizona Rookie League Giants against the Arizona Rookie League Angels and did not allow a hit in three innings pitched. The Giants' ace also struck out two and walked one. 

In both the first and third innings, Bumgarner pitched a perfect three up and three down frame. 

Bumgarner was diagnosed with a Grade 2 sprain of his left throwing shoulder and sustained bruised ribs from his dirt bike accident on an off day in Colorado. Pitching in a game for the first time in over two months, Bumgarner was throwing between 88-91 miles per hour, according to Tommy Stokke of FanRagSports. 

After finishing his three innings of work, Bumgarner went down to the bullpen to increase his pitch count, reports Sande Charles of FanRagSports

Before sustaining the injury, Bumgarner was 0-3 with a 3.00 ERA in four starts this season. 

The Giants have gone 21-41 since Bumgarner's injury. They are 27-51 on the year and sit 24.5 games behind the Dodgers in the NL West. 

After another Giants clunker, Bochy tells players 'enough is enough'

After another Giants clunker, Bochy tells players 'enough is enough'

SAN FRANCISCO — A few minutes after yet another missed opportunity at the plate Sunday, a voice came over a speaker in the press box at AT&T Park and announced a 524th consecutive sellout. It nicely summed up this current stretch of Giants baseball. 

The seats are emptier than they used to be at first pitch, and they were just about abandoned in the ninth inning of an 8-2 loss, but for the most part the fans are still showing up in droves. One woman brought a toaster by the dugout Sunday morning and asked players and coaches to sign it, hoping to recapture the magic from across the bridge. Another, Bryan Stow, made his first appearance of the season at AT&T Park, met with Bruce Bochy, and said he hoped to see a win. As Matt Moore started warming up, a band set up on top of the visiting dugout to play hits that celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love. 

For a while, AT&T Park was rocking. And then, as has happened so often this summer, the game started. 

The Giants turned in another epic clunker in a season full of them. They have lost 12 of their last 13 games and 21 of 26, but it’s worse than the raw numbers. On most nights, some in the organization have noted privately, they are simply boring. It’s one thing to lose, it’s quite another to do it in this way. 

“There’s no getting around it,” Bochy said after the sweep. “I’ve been through some tough stretches here and this is as tough as any stretch I’ve seen. For some reason the baseball gods are really testing us here and (testing) this group. It’s not that they’re not coming out ready or trying, but enough is enough.

“At some point, we’ve got to find a way to get this thing turned around.”

Even a slight pivot would be welcomed by the faithful. There were scattered boos Sunday, the latest in a growing trend. This is a fan base that has seen the highest highs, but rarely in franchise history have the lows been this low. 

The crowd no longer turns to the rally lights that were used so often in an awful April, but the noise still grows with each new rally. And then, every single time Sunday, the Giants killed off any hope. 

In the second inning, a Brandon Belt bunt single and Brandon Crawford bloop put two on, but a pair of rookies flied out. 

In the third, the bases were loaded ahead of Buster Posey. He flied out to bring one run across, and there were still runners on the corners for Belt, who leads the team in homers. On a 2-2 count, Hunter Pence inexplicably took off for second. He was caught, the inning was over, and the two-run Mets lead was intact. Bochy said he did not send Pence. 

In the sixth, there were two on with no outs for Posey. Both runners bolted to stay out of a double play. Posey popped up to first -- for a double play.

“He’s not a guy that strikes out, so I’m pretty confident sending runners with Buster,” Bochy said. “We can’t keep laying back. We’re trying to force the issue a bit and stay out of double plays.”

In the eighth, the Giants loaded the bases for Posey and Belt. Posey grounded out. Belt struck out for the third time. 

“We’re getting guys out there,” Bochy said. “We’re not doing enough damage.”

Matt Moore’s damage was self-inflicted. He twice gave up homers to the guy — Rene Rivera — hitting in front of the pitcher. Moore said he has stopped throwing his cutter the past three starts and tried to get his four-seamer going, but the Mets were teeing off. Moore gave up five runs on seven hits. He was pulled in the fifth, left to think about mechanics that still aren’t right. 

“The cutter is a little bit different of a pitch and at times it can take away from the four-seam fastball location-wise, and command of the four-seam was starting to go down the more I threw (the cutter),” Moore said. “I’m anxious to get back to it, but the foundation has got to be throwing the four-seam fastball. I need to execute where they’re carrying through the zone, not running or cutting.”

Moore said his confidence is fine and his problems are not physical. Others can no longer say that. Austin Slater, a rare bright spot in this five-win month, was pulled with a tight hip flexor. He was headed for an MRI. 

Slater is too young to be one of the players Bochy approached after the game. He said he talked to a few, though, passing along that “enough is enough” message. Moore, last in the National League in ERA (6.04), was not one who needed a reminder. 

“I’m sitting on a six right now with not a lot of wins and not enough team wins when I’m throwing,” he said. “It’s been 'enough' for me for the last couple of months.”