Of course Sandoval would feel that way. The move turned him into
The Giants' struggling third baseman drove in the go-ahead run with
a two-out single in the seventh inning, and five pitchers combined
to hold the Dodgers to six hits, leading San Francisco to a 2-1
victory over its National League West rival.
A second consecutive loss in San Francisco was doubly painful for
the Dodgers, as Los Angeles shortstop Hanley Ramirez left the game
after he was hit on the back of his left hand by a pitch while
leading off the seventh inning. X-rays were negative.
"I'm sure he's relieved," Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said
afterward about Ramirez, who wasn't ruled out of Thursday's series
finale. "We were worried."
After the Dodgers stranded the bases loaded in a 1-1 tie following
Ramirez's injury, the Giants came through with the decisive run in
the bottom of the inning.
Left-hander J.P. Howell (1-1), the second Dodgers pitcher, walked
No. 8 hitter Joaquin Arias, the Giants' shortstop, to open the
inning. Pinch hitter Ehire Adrianza sacrificed Arias to second, and
after center fielder Angel Pagan struck out, the Dodgers elected to
intentionally walk Pence.
That set the stage for the switch-hitting Sandoval, who reached out
and dropped a single into center field, scoring Arias with the
"I had to tell myself to calm down," Sandoval said of an at-bat that
began with a weak swing and miss at a Howell fastball that was off
the plate. "I told myself not to go after that one again."
Mattingly wasn't convinced Howell's next pitch was any better. It
was just slower — a changeup that also was off the outside corner.
"He's one of those guys where you can't throw the ball bad enough.
You can't throw far enough off the plate," Mattingly said of
Sandoval. "He just put his bat on it."
Protecting the 2-1 lead, right-hander Santiago Casilla and lefty
Javier Lopez combined on a scoreless eighth, and closer Sergio Romo
went through the middle of the Los Angeles order in 1-2-3 fashion in
the ninth for his fourth save.
The win allowed the Giants (10-5) to move ahead of the Dodgers (9-6)
atop the NL West.
"I don't care about myself," said Sandoval, who is batting .186. "I
care about winning games. I'm happy every day we win games."
The Giants outhit the Dodgers 7-6. Half the Los Angeles' hit total
came off the bat of second baseman Dee Gordon, who drove in the
Dodgers' run with a sixth-inning triple.
Sandoval had two of the Giants' seven hits.
For the second night in a row, two previously struggling starters
pitched well without getting a decision.
Dodgers left-hander Paul Maholm, who entered the game with an 8.10
ERA, held the Giants to one run on five hits in six innings. He
walked three and struck out two.
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He also scored the Dodgers' first run after drawing a two-out,
full-count walk from Giants right-hander Ryan Vogelsong in the top
of the sixth. The next batter, Gordon, smacked a triple to
right-center field, scoring Maholm from first to tie the game at
Vogelsong stranded Gordon at third, but he couldn't get out of a jam
in the seventh and had to be replaced by right-hander Jean Machi
Vogelsong threw only one more pitch after hitting Ramirez to open
the seventh. He gave up a single to first baseman Adrian Gonzalez to
end his night, having allowed just one run on four hits over
six-plus innings. He walked two and struck out two.
The single extended Gonzalez's hitting streak to 11 games.
Machi gave up an infield hit to right fielder Andre Ethier to load
the bases with one out, but then he got third baseman Juan Uribe to
ground back to the mound for a home-to-first double play that ended
the inning and kept the score tied.
Neither team managed a hit with the bases loaded over the first two
games of the series, going a combined 0-for-8.
"Our pitchers were good. Theirs were a little better," Mattingly
said. "We just couldn't get that extra run up."
NOTES: The Giants earned their fifth one-run win. ... San
Francisco's bullpen has a 0.63 ERA in the first eight games of a
nine-game homestand. ... The game featured a four-minute, 25-second
video review after Dodgers CF Matt Kemp was called out at first base
on a pickoff. After the long delay, the Dodgers' challenge was
denied and the call stood. ... Dodgers GM Ned Colletti (60) and
Giants manager Bruce Bochy (59) celebrated birthdays Wednesday. ...
The Giants activated LHP Jeremy Affeldt (sprained knee ligament) off
the 15-day disabled list before the game and optioned OF Juan Perez
(0-for-8 this season) to Triple-A Fresno. ... RHP Chad Billingsley
(Tommy John surgery in 2013) returned to Los Angeles to have an MRI
on his ailing elbow. The Dodgers expect to get the results Thursday.
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