Urban: Overseas to All-Star, Vogelsong unabashed


Urban: Overseas to All-Star, Vogelsong unabashed

July 12, 2011


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Mychael Urban

PHOENIX -- Many lessons are among the layers of the Ryan Vogelsong story, a poignant reminder of the virtues of perseverance and sheer love of the game.And as the story shines in the national spotlight this week in Arizona, where the 33-year-old right-hander is the most unlikely of five Giants participating in the All-Star Game festivities, Vogelsong offers a little advice to those hoping to follow his path.Listen to your wife, guys. Seriously."They're always right," Vogelsong said Monday during a Media Day mashup. "I'm not being sarcastic. They are."Alas, had Vogelsong listened to his own wife, Nicole, a few years back, the inspirational story that drew large crowds of curious chroniclers wanting to hear more Monday might never have unfolded so dramatically.
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After the game chewed up Vogelsong and spit him out of the big leagues after the 2006 season, he signed to play in Japan, and there he stayed for three seasons.Nicole thought her husband was giving up in a sense, not pursuing another job stateside with appropriate confidence and zeal."When I signed to go to Japan, that's what our biggest fights were about," Vogelsong said. "She thought I was selling myself short. She wanted me to keep trying free agency, to find a big-league job."Might all this have been avoided? The international detour? The grueling, character-testing year in the minors last season? Another trip across borders, to winter ball in Venezuela? It doesn't happen if Nicole Vogelsong initially gets her way?"I don't know," Vogelsong said. "That's hard to say. But she is always right."
VIDEO: Giants at All-Star Media Day
Call it delayed gratification. For both of them. And after routinely downplaying first the possibility of being an All-Star and then the significance of being one -- out of humility and then shock -- it finally hit home for Vogelsong over the weekend when he saw a graphic on a baseball highlights show about the several All-Star starters in a row that the New York Mets were in the midst of facing."They put up each guy's face, and there I was," he said as a smile spread across his face. "That was pretty cool."Quite a moment for Nicole, no doubt, as well.

Samardzija dials up seven strong innings as Giants take series from Pirates


Samardzija dials up seven strong innings as Giants take series from Pirates


SAN FRANCISCO -- Brandon Belt doubled in the go-ahead run in the bottom of the seventh inning in support of starter Jeff Samardzija, who threw seven strong innings in the San Francisco Giants' 2-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday.

Pinch-hitter Miguel Gomez doubled to lead off the seventh for the Giants, who won their second straight and third of five. Denard Span sacrificed him to third and Belt drove a ball to left field that Starling Marte seemed to have trouble finding. It fell in front of him, allowing Gomez to score.

Adam Frazier drove in a run for the Pirates, who lost their fourth in five following a six-game winning streak.

Samardzija (5-11) allowed a run and four hits, striking out eight and walking two in winning for the first time since July 2. He had allowed 12 runs in his previous 10 1/3 innings.

Pirates starter Trevor Williams pitched well, allowing a run and five hits in six innings. He walked three and struck out two.

Tony Watson (5-3) pitched the seventh and took the loss.

Hunter Strickland pitched a spotless eighth and Sam Dyson worked the ninth for his sixth save.

Each pitcher worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the early going. Samardzija struck out Josh Bell to open the second and then allowed four consecutive baserunners, including Frazier's double. He helped himself with a bare-handed grab of high hopper to record an out at the plate.

The Giants loaded the bases with one out in the first, with Brandon Crawford driving in a run on a groundout.

Pirates: OF Gregory Polanco (hamstring) is resuming baseball activities. He is hitting and playing catch and riding on a stationary bike. ... Austin Meadows, the Pirates' top prospect, has been hitting and throwing and is scheduled to resume playing games next week.

Giants: OF Carlos Moncrief had his contract purchased from Sacramento and will be used as a pinch-hitter and spot starter. ... RHP Johnny Cueto (blister) threw 45 pitches in a bullpen session before the game. He's scheduled to throw again Friday and if all goes well, will likely return to action. ... RHP Mark Melancon (right pronater strain) threw 30 pitches before the game and will throw again in Los Angeles either another bullpen or to hitters. He could start a rehab assignment soon after.

Pirates: Chad Kuhl (3-7, 4.92 ERA) gets the call in Friday's series opener at San Diego. He's won his only start against the Padres.

Giants: LHP Matt Moore (3-10, 5.82 ERA) starts the series opener at the Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday. He's 2-2 in four career starts at Dodger Stadium.

Eduardo Nuñez thanks Giants after trade: 'I will be forever grateful'

Eduardo Nuñez thanks Giants after trade: 'I will be forever grateful'

Eduardo Nuñez's stint with the San Francisco Giants lasted just under a year.

After the Giants acquired the infielder from the Twins on July 28, 2016, they shipped him off to Boston for two minor league pitchers on July 25, 2017.

On Wednesday, the day after Nuñez was traded mid-game, he went to Instagram to thank the Giants' organization and the fans for his year in San Francisco. 

Between the second half of 2016 and the first half of 2017, Nuñez slashed .293./331/.417 and swiped 31 bags. 

The Giants and his teammates also took to social media to thank Nuñez for his time.