Rewind: Despite struggles, expect Giants to stand by Vogelsong

Rewind: Despite struggles, expect Giants to stand by Vogelsong
April 21, 2014, 9:45 pm
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They put their chips on the felt in the winter when they gave Vogelsong a $5 million contract. They chose him to be their No. 5 starter. As long as he’s healthy, they won’t back out of that decision now.
Andrew Baggarly

Ryan Vogelsong found a way to halt the Giants’ seemingly endless run of close games.

He got blasted in the first inning.

Vogelsong had his shortest start as a Giant, giving up three home runs in 1 1/3 innings as the Colorado Rockies coasted to an 8-2 victory at Coors Field Monday night.

Long man David Huff didn’t make it much further. He strained his left quadriceps while beating out his first major league hit in the third, leaving the Giants with an entire cathedral to mop.

After the game, Bruce Bochy told reporters that Huff likely was headed to the disabled list and his replacement might not necessarily be a pitcher. The club won’t have their other long guy, Yusmeiro Petit, after he threw four innings. But Bohcy didn’t use any of his frontline relievers, and he’s got Madison Bumgarner on the mound Tuesday.

No lead is safe at Coors Field, but it’s more or less under police protection when the trailing club keeps hitting into double plays. Buster Posey had his bat shattered by a 2-0 pitch from Jorge De La Rosa while batting with the bases loaded in the third inning. Brandon Hicks also bounced into two after the first two Giants reached in the fourth.

The Giants finished with just five hits and the frustration in the late innings turned to the strike zone.  Several players shook their heads as plate umpire John Tumpane rang them up; Angel Pagan’s reaction was a bit more animated, resulting in his ejection in the seventh.

Pagan’s ejection left the Giants without a backup outfielder, and Michael Morse, who has been nursing a sore hamstring, was still in the game.

The story of the night was the first two innings, though.

Bochy might complain about all the gray hairs sprouting up as the Giants’ previous 10 games were decided by 11 runs. But that stressful script is a lot better than having a starter get blitzed before the late arrivals are even in their seats.

Some fans might call for Vogelsong to get hooked from the rotation, especially after Petit yielded just a two-run homer in his four innings. But the Giants won’t make such a move so quickly. They put their chips on the felt in the winter when they gave Vogelsong a $5 million contract. They chose him to be their No. 5 starter. As long as he’s healthy, they won’t back out of that decision now – especially after all he did for the organization in 2011 and ’12.

Let’s see where Vogelsong stands after eight starts instead of four. That would represent a quarter of the season, and offer a fair barometer of his stuff and stamina.

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