Amy G's Giants Xclusive -- Marco Scutaro

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Amy G's Giants Xclusive -- Marco Scutaro

Amy: You are looking at the newest Giant but certainly not a new face in baseball. Marco and I go way back to 2006 and 2007 and I have to say its really nice to see you back in the Bay Area. Is it nice for you to be back in the Bay, Marco?

Marco: Yeah, no doubt. I mean I really have fun here in the Bay Area. Four years Ive been with Oakland so Im here with the Giants now and were in first place and have a great opportunity to be in the playoffs.

A: Lets go back to Friday night. We get the news that theyve traded for you. Whats your initial reaction? Youve been traded to a first place team in N.L. West.

MS: It was actually after the game on Friday so as soon as the GM told me, Marco, I need to talk to you, I just kind of figured. I just asked him, Where am I going? So, he told me San Francisco and I said, Oh, all right. Then all the thoughts start going into your head, stuff like family, where youre going to move, all this stuff, you have to pack. But, you know, its part of my job and Im happy to be here.

A: Did it help at all that you had been in the Bay Area before seasons prior to that so you kind of knew the area at least?

MS: Yeah, it does, definitely. Its different when you have already been in a place than if you havent. I kind of know what to expect. I played here a lot when I worked with the As so I am kind of familiar with this. Its cool.

A: So, lets talk about your role on the team as the starting third baseman, while Pablo is out on the D.L. When I covered you, you were an every day short stop but third base isnt an unfamiliar spot for you. How different is it to go from third to short or second and how do you plan on helping the team?

MS: Well, I havent played it in awhile but I guess you just have to get used to it. The biggest difference is the bat angle from third base but Im just here to do whatever they ask me to do. Im just here to try and help this team and try to do my job. I mean stay on my game, try to get on base, score runs just do those things that help teams win games.

A: You were with Colorado so youve played against the Dodgers but is it different playing against the Dodgers in a Giants uniform? Did you get a taste of the rivalry yesterday in your first game?

MS: Yeah, I kind of felt that. Its always nice to have those kinds of games like that. Its good for fans, its good for baseball, its good for everybody.

A: Youre from Venezuela. If memory serves correct, is dad Italian?

MS: Yeah, my dad is from Italy and my mom is from Spain.

A: So, no one is Venezuelan except you, really?

MS: Yeah, I was born in Venezuela, so yeah.

A: But you have several countrymen on the team with Hector, who is not here right now, and Pablo. Is it kind of nice to catch up with some guys from home?

M: Yeah, its always nice to see guys from your country. You know, I can already tell there are a bunch of good guys here and its exciting to be here.

Giants get blanked by Braves, now have lowest-scoring team in majors

Giants get blanked by Braves, now have lowest-scoring team in majors

SAN FRANCISCO — Over in Cleveland earlier Friday, Brandon Moss hit a three-run homer for the visiting team and five other players chipped in a pair of hits. The Royals had six runs, which meant that when Jim Johnson closed the Giants out a few hours later, what has seemed true all season became officially true. The Giants have the lowest-scoring lineup in the majors.

At 3.32 runs per game, they have dipped below the equally-disappointing Royals (3.38). They are capable at the moment of making any pitching staff look dominant. A 2-0 shutout was the first of the year for the Braves, who previously had just two games this season where they allowed fewer than two runs. 

“Six runs in (the last) four games … I thought we would come home and get some rips in tonight, but it didn’t happen,” Bruce Bochy said. 

The manager’s frustration showed late in this one. After the only rally of the game — a two-run single by opposing pitcher Jaime Garcia — Bochy took his cap off and rubbed his forehead. He dipped his head and briefly stood as if he was going to fall asleep on the rail. The bats were equally still. 

The Giants had just four hits, all of them singles against Garcia, who is a nice pitcher but hardly one of the league’s best. One was an infield single by Eduardo Nuñez, another a single through Garcia’s five-hole, and a third a generous ruling by the official scorekeeper. 

“It comes down to, you’ve got to get some hits and create opportunities, and we’re not doing it very often,” Bochy said. “It’s just a matter of guys getting somewhat hot. We did, we had some success, and we won some games. The thing you like to see is some good cuts and I didn’t think we got enough of those tonight.”

That run, which spanned the last homestand and small parts of two road trips, has come to a screeching halt. The Giants have lost five of six. It seems silly to scoreboard-watch in May, especially when a team is playing like this, but it’s worth noting that the teams the Giants eventually need to catch keep winning. They fell 12 games back of the Rockies and 11 back of the streaking Diamondbacks. They are 9 1/2 back of the Dodgers, who might be the best team in the whole league. 

Matt Cain did his part to allow the Giants to keep pace. He got beat just once in seven sharp innings. The Giants intentionally walked Dansby Swanson to get to Garcia, who bounced a single into left. Brandon Belt had a play at the plate, but his throw was short and hit the runner. A second run scored. 

“That’s tough,” Cain said. “(Garcia) was throwing the ball really good and that’s what it comes down to, you’re looking for that one hit and he did it. He’s a good hitter. We’ve seen it in St. Louis. But it definitely is tough when the pitcher does that … it just stinks on my part to give up a hit to the opposing pitcher.”

Instant Analysis: Giants bats silenced, losing streak now at four games

Instant Analysis: Giants bats silenced, losing streak now at four games

BOX SCORE

SAN FRANCISCO — The return to AT&T Park was a huge boost to Matt Cain, who has wild home-road splits this season, but it did predictable things to an already-limp Giants offense. 

The Giants entered the night as the lowest-scoring team in the National League and they got blanked 2-0 by Jaime Garcia and the Braves. Garcia out-dueled Cain and provided the only offense of the night, as well. The Giants have dropped five of six.

Here are five things to know from AT&T Park, where they keep having Star Wars Night but they’ve never once celebrated Super Troopers … 

--- Cain entered the seventh with a 0.94 ERA at home this season, but the opposing pitcher busted him. With one on and two outs, the Giants intentionally walked Dansby Swanson to get to Garcia, a career .145 hitter. He bounced a single into shallow left and it looked like Brandon Belt had a play at the plate, but his throw home hit the runner. That allowed Swanson to race home for a 2-0 lead. 

--- Cain’s final line: seven innings, one earned run, one walk, three strikeouts. Yep, that’s a Caining.

--- Justin Ruggiano is here for the opportunity he was given in the sixth. Ruggiano has always crushed lefties, and Bruce Bochy put him behind Buster Posey on Friday night. The Braves intentionally walked Posey to load the bases for Ruggiano, who grounded out to third. Even the platoon splits are failing the Giants. 

--- If you need a little perspective on Christian Arroyo’s struggles, look across the field. Swanson, the former No. 1 overall pick, is batting .198. The shortstop slashed .302/.361/.442 as a rookie but his numbers are way down across the board, and he’s nearly two years older than Arroyo. These things take time. Having said that, Arroyo’s hole is pretty deep. He’s hitless in his last 21 at-bats after an 0 for 3.

--- There were three no-pitch intentional walks. I hope you used the extra ninety seconds wisely.