Torres leads Giants to 6-1 victory over Padres

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Torres leads Giants to 6-1 victory over Padres

July 15, 2011BOX SCORE GIANTS VIDEOMLB PAGE MLB SCOREBOARD
SAN DIEGO (AP) For one night, anyway, San Francisco leadoff batter Andres Torres was better than the entire San Diego Padres lineup.Torres had three hits, two RBIs and scored three runs for the defending World Series champions, who won 6-1 Friday night to extend the Padres' losing streak to a season-high seven games.Tim Lincecum and three relievers combined on a four-hitter and Cody Ross homered for the NL West-leading Giants. Pablo Sandoval went 0 for 2, ending his career-best 22-game hitting streak, although he walked twice and hit a sacrifice fly."That was a great game he had," manager Bruce Bochy said about Torres. "He did it all. That's the key to winning ballgames, is getting your leadoff guy going. I thought Andres had a great game plan up there. That's a game he should feel good about and hopefully get his confidence going."
URBAN: Padres have Giants' number no more
Torres is scheduled to sit out against Padres lefty Cory Luebke on Saturday night."As good a game as he had, he still gets the day off tomorrow," Bochy said. "He's such a hard worker, sometimes we need to back him off a bit."Bochy said Torres can be hard on himself if he doesn't play well. Torres, who came in hitting .224, said he showed up early to work on his hitting stroke."I feel great. I've been working hard," he said. "You want to help the team win somehow. Today I got it going."He also made a nice catch in center field, hauling in Kyle Phillips' fly on the warning track and then slamming into the padded fence.San Diego had only four singles, three of them off Lincecum (8-7) during his six innings. The right-hander allowed one run while striking out seven and walking three to win consecutive starts for just the second time this year.It helped that the Giants scored some runs for the two-time Cy Young Award winner, considering that he had received only six runs of support in his previous seven starts."He didn't quite pitch as efficient as he'd like, but overall it's a good job," Bochy said. "His command wasn't quite as sharp, but he found a way to give us six solid innings."Jeremy Affeldt gave up one hit in 1 2-3 innings, Sergio Romo retired the only batter he faced and Guillermo Mota pitched a perfect ninth.The Giants have taken the first two of a four-game series and have beaten the Padres four times in six meetings since July 4.The Padres, struggling in the first season of the post-Adrian Gonzalez era, have dropped 14 games behind the Giants and 14 games under .500. San Diego has scored just 10 runs during the six-game losing streak, including consecutive 1-0 losses at Los Angeles last weekend.The Padres scored their run off Lincecum without getting a hit. Alberto Gonzalez walked leading off the fourth, advanced on two wild pitches and scored on Orlando Hudson's grounder to second for the second out."He wasn't as crisp as we've seen him in the past," Padres manager Bud Black said. "Nevertheless, it's good stuff, competitive stuff. We had some good at-bats against him, but we couldn't string together any hits."Lincecum said his slider got better as the game went on."That last inning was when it was the best," he said. "'I kind of mess around with grips here and there to see if anything's doing something different, if I can keep it away to righties or make it just go down. That last inning I found a comfortable grip and I just stuck to it consistently."
Giants Insider gallery: Giants win in friendly confines
Ross homered to left off Dustin Moseley leading off the second, his seventh. Torres came up big all game. He singled leading off the game and eventually scored on Sandoval's sacrifice fly. Torres hit an RBI single in the fifth and eventually scored from third as Mike Fontenot was thrown out trying to steal second. He had an RBI double in the seventh and scored on Ernesto Frieri's wild pitch.Moseley (2-9) allowed four runs and seven hits in six innings, struck out three and walked two."Subpar," he said. "Early on, I kind of put us in a hole. Got us in a bind in the fifth with the leadoff double. When I did make a mistake, they took advantage of it."Notes: San Diego's Luis Martinez and San Francisco's Hector Sanchez both made their big league debuts as pinch-hitters. Martinez lined out to Affeldt on the first pitch he saw in the seventh. Sanchez walked in the ninth. ... Gonzalez replaced 3B Chase Headley after the top of the first inning. The Padres said Headley has a strained right calf. Headley left Thursday night's game with a bruised left ankle. ... The Hall of Fame asked for and will receive the 1983 throwback jersey Black wore Thursday night as the team honored the late Dick Williams. The jerseys the Padres wore Thursday night included a patch with Williams' initials. Williams, who died July 7 at age 82, managed the Padres from 1982-85. The Padres reached their first World Series in 1984, losing in five games to Detroit. ... Williams was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2008 after being elected by the Veterans Committee. ... Jim Riggleman was hired by the Giants as a special assignment scout less than a month after he abruptly resigned as Washington Nationals manager when they wouldn't pick up his contract option for next season.

Instant Analysis: Five takeaways from A's loss despite five home runs

Instant Analysis: Five takeaways from A's loss despite five home runs

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Hit five home runs, and a team has to like its chances of winning.

The A’s simply couldn’t keep up with the Houston Astros’ bats, however, in an 11-8 loss Wednesday night that snapped Oakland’s four-game winning streak. Khris Davis went deep twice, and Ryon Healy, Jed Lowrie and Matt Olson all went deep as the A’s set their season high for home runs.

But Houston racked up 17 hits against Jesse Hahn (3-6) and four relievers and evened this three-game series at a game apiece. It was the second time Hahn has gotten knocked around by Houston inside of a week.

The A’s took an early lead, 5-4, in the third on the second of Davis’ two homers, part of a four-run rally for Oakland. But the Astros answered right back with five runs in the bottom half, and the A’s never recovered from that momentum swing.

Hahn’s struggles continue: Hahn was trying to rebound after the Astros hung nine earned runs on him last Thursday at the Coliseum. Things didn’t improve Wednesday at Minute Maid Park, as the right-hander lasted just two-plus innings and allowed six runs on nine hits. Is this a case of one team simply having Hahn’s number or do the A’s make a move and try someone else in the rotation? It bears watching.

Krush Davis x 2: It was apparent early this would be a slugfest, with Khris Davis homering twice within the first three innings as the A’s tried to keep pace. He led off the second with a shot to left field, then came back with a three-run blast to left in the third that put Oakland up 5-4. The homers were his team-leading 20th and 21st.

Reddick-ulous night: Josh Reddick filled up the stat sheet against his old team in every way imaginable. He went 3-for-4 with three RBI and two runs, and twice caught the A’s by surprise by stealing third base. For good measure, he turned in an excellent running catch in right field to rob Yonder Alonso.

Strange offensive night: What to make of this night offensively for the A’s? They hit a season-high five homers but also struck out a whopping 17 times. No matter … you can’t hang this one on the offense, because …

The pitching staff just couldn’t hold things down: Josh Smith was called upon to hold down the fort after Hahn departed in the third, but Smith was tagged for three runs on four hits. Daniel Coulombe and John Axford also got touched for runs. Rookie Michael Brady did turn in 1 1/3 scoreless innings.

Cubs outfielder vows he didn't give Trump the middle finger at White House

Cubs outfielder vows he didn't give Trump the middle finger at White House

WASHINGTON – Albert Almora Jr. didn’t use Wednesday’s Oval Office photo op as a subtle form of political protest, but it did sort of look like the Cubs outfielder gave President Donald Trump the middle finger, at least from that angle in an image that went viral on Twitter.    

“There was two fingers! Look closely, there was two fingers!” a veteran player yelled across the room as reporters gathered around Almora’s locker inside the visiting clubhouse at Nationals Park. 

“Guys were giving me a hard time about it,” Almora said, “but I pointed out the second finger. We’re all good.”

In another White House visit that didn’t look nearly as unofficial or informal as the Cubs said it would be, one snapshot became Almora with part of his left hand in his pocket. Almora stood near Kris Bryant – who held a 45 Wrigley Field scoreboard panel – and Trump at his desk with the World Series trophy.

“Obviously, it’s unfortunate,” Almora said with a laugh. “I’m getting ready to take a picture and I’m posing there. But you guys know that I would never do that to the president of the United States. 

“I respect everybody. It is what it is. We laugh about it now, but there’s definitely two fingers out there.”

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