for this game

Winn supports Cain as Giants edge Nationals

Jun 10, 2008 - 4:03 AM By Todd Jacobson PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

WASHINGTON (Ticker) -- For the better part of seven innings, San Francisco Giants righthander Matt Cain labored through 92-degree heat and humidity thick as a fog, while sweating through 108 pitches.

But it took just two brief appearances from reliever Keiichi Yabu and closer Brian Wilson to extricate Cain from a pair of tough situations as the Giants posted a 3-2 victory over the Washington Nationals on Monday night.

With two men on base and Cain watching from the Giants' dugout in the seventh inning, Yabu needed just four pitches to coax an inning-ending double play out of Nationals pinch hitter Aaron Boone.

Before he pitched a scoreless ninth inning for his 18th save, Wilson recorded the final out of the eighth with the bases loaded when Felipe Lopez lined out to right field.

"That's the ultimate situation for me. I like it," said Wilson, who was well aware of the gravity of the situation. "We had the opportunity to win that fourth game, and it was just that much-added emphasis going out there and getting the job done."

Randy Winn drove in two runs and scored another to spark the offense for San Francisco, which completed a four-game sweep and helped lift Cain to his first win since May 13.

"We have had some good stretches and some bad stretches but we haven't been able to put together a long stretch of playing good," Winn said. "It's a good start to our road trip, but we'll see. We just have to keep it up."

As the Giants finished up the first leg of a seven-game road trip, it was never easy.

Cain (3-4) was bailed out by veteran catcher Bengie Molina, who caught Elijah Dukes and Lastings Milledge trying to steal second base on back-to-back at-bats in the first inning. Cain also scattered eight hits and one walk to go with six strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings.

He gave up just one run, which came in the fourth inning, when Milledge narrowly missed a home run - his opposite-field shot cleared the top of the out-of-town scoreboard in right-center field but caromed back into play off of a clear piece of plexiglass separating fans from the field.

Milledge eventually came around to score on a sacrifice fly by Nationals catcher Jesus Flores.

"Cain was good today," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "That was a great outing for him. He did what we needed, which was go deep into the game. ... He just looked determined to go out there and get it done."

That seemed especially true as he wriggled out of a sixth-inning jam.

With runners on first and third and two outs, Cain fired pitch after pitch to Flores - 11 fastballs and sliders - before Flores finally swung and missed at a slider diving off the corner of the plate.

In that situation, Cain said "somebody's going to have to give in, and I didn't want it to be me."

Despite green caps - worn on the team's environmentally-friendly "Get Your Green On" Night - the Nationals remained in a series-long, and season-long, offensive funk.

With five members of the team's Opening Day lineup on the disabled list, including 3-4-5 hitters Ryan Zimmerman, Nick Johnson and Austin Kearns, Washington scored just six runs in four losses to the Giants and remained last in the National League in batting average and runs scored.

"This is our team," Washington manager Manny Acta said. "Nobody's going to feel sorry for us. We shouldn't feel sorry for ourselves. We just have to keep on fighting and snap out of it."

Dmitri Young and Cristian Guzman had two hits apiece for the Nationals, who left eight on base. But no situation was more telling than what transpired in the eighth.

After nearly scoring in the seventh, Washington loaded the bases against reliever Tyler Walker one frame later and scored a run on a throwing error by Molina. That brought on Wilson, who got Lopez to fly out.

Meanwhile, the Giants provided just enough offense against Nationals righthander Tyler Clippard (0-1), who was acquired in a trade with the New York Yankees during the winter. He made his Washington debut, and like rookie Garrett Mock a day before him, Clippard lasted just 4 1/3 innings, tiring in the heat.

He allowed just five hits and struck out six, but Winn broke up a 1-1 game with one of his two RBI on a fifth-inning single.

Molina added a run-scoring double to end Clippard's night. Like Mock, Clippard was sent back to Class AAA Columbus following the loss, when infielder Ronnie Belliard was activated from the 15-day disabled list.








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    SAN FRANCISCO 1 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 3 5 2
    WASHINGTON 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 2 9 1 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: SFO - MATT CAIN, KEIICHI YABU (7TH), TYLER WALKER (8TH), ALEX
    HINSHAW (8TH), BRIAN WILSON (8TH) AND BENGIE MOLINA
    WAS - TYLER CLIPPARD, BRIAN SANCHES (5TH), JESUS C

    Jun 9 10:17 PM
  • 41
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 41 roots (Close Finish)

    Giants 3, Nationals 2  Top 9, 0 OutsJun 9 10:14 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    ERROR BY BENGIE MOLINA ALLOWED LASTINGS MILLEDGE TO
    SCORE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J FLORES ON FIRST, W HARRIS ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN FRANCISCO 3
    WASHINGTON 2 BOTTOM, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: K CASTO (.286, 0-FOR-3)

    Giants 3, Nationals 2  Bot 8, 0 OutsJun 9 10:00 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY BENGIE MOLINA SCORED RANDY WINN.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, B MOLINA ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN FRANCISCO 3
    WASHINGTON 1 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR SAN FRANCISCO: A ROWAND (.327, 0-FOR-2)

    Giants 3, Nationals 1  Top 5, 0 OutsJun 9 8:32 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY RANDY WINN SCORED RAY DURHAM.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, R WINN ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN FRANCISCO 2
    WASHINGTON 1 TOP, 5TH
    DUE UP FOR SAN FRANCISCO: B MOLINA (.333, 1-FOR-2)

    Giants 2, Nationals 1  Top 5, 0 OutsJun 9 8:28 PM


  • NL
    AT WASHINGTON - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY JESUS FLORES SCORED LASTINGS MILLEDGE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, NONE ON, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SAN FRANCISCO 1
    WASHINGTON 1 BOTTOM, 4TH
    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: K CASTO (.316, 0-FOR-1)

    Giants 1, Nationals 1  Bot 4, 0 OutsJun 9 8:16 PM


  • NL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    SAN FRANCISCO 1 1 1 0
    WASHINGTON 0 0 0 (BOT 1)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: SFO - MATT CAIN
    WAS - TYLER CLIPPARD

    DUE UP FOR WASHINGTON: C GUZMAN (.307, 5 HR, 21 RBI)
    E DUKES (.192, 1 HR, 7 RBI)
    L MILLEDGE (.246, 4 HR, 23 RB

    Giants 1, Nationals 0  Bot 1, 0 OutsJun 9 7:21 PM