Walter Mencken 7 p.m., Dec. 10
Getting to San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Ryan Vogelsong isn't impossible, but it isn't easy, as the San Diego Padres hitters can attest to. Vogelsong went six innings giving up only one unearned run on five hits and a walk while striking out four as the Giants beat the Padres 3-1 Friday night in the first of a three-game series that will close out the 2012 schedule at Petco Park.
The Padres had their first opportunity in the bottom of the first inning. With one out, Will Venable and Chase Headley hit back-to-back singles putting runners on first and third. But Yonder Alonso lined out to short and Chris Denorfia lined out to right field and the Padres came up empty.
The Giants made the best of their turn in the top of the second inning when Buster Posey opened with a triple to right field. Hunter Pence then came up and singled to short stop, scoring Posey, and the Giants took a 1-0 lead.
Again, the Padres squandered a scoring opportunity in the bottom of the second, when with one out, John Baker doubled and Andy Parrino followed with a walk. Andrew Werner hit a sacrifice bunt putting Baker and Parrino on second and third base, but Everth Cabrera popped out to end the threat.
San Francisco added on in the top of the third inning, with pitcher Ryan Vogelsong lining a single to center field to open the frame. One out later, Marco Scutaro hit an infield single with Vogelsong taking second base, and then Pablo Sandoval doubled home Vogelsong and Scutaro and the Giants went up 3-0 on the Padres.
Padres starter Andrew Werner pitched into the fifth inning, when the Giants threatened again. Ryan Theriot opened with a single, then Pablo Sandoval grounded into a double-play. But then when Buster Posey hit a double to left field, Padres manager Buddy Black had seen enough.
Black sent Anthony Bass in to relieve Werner and Hunter Pence hit back to the mound to end the threat. Werner went 4 2/3 innings and gave up the 3 runs on 8 hits and a walk, striking out 2 Giants batters.
In the bottom of the sixth inning, the Padres caught a break. Will Venable singled to right field, and then Chase Headley reached on a throwing error by Brandon Belt, Venable taking third base and Headley taking second.
Yonder Alonso then singled in Venable, with Headley taking third base and still no one out. But the Padres could take no further advantage with Chris Denorfia striking out and then Cameron Maybin hitting into a double-play, and the Padres settled for cutting in to the Giants lead 3-1 after six innings.
The Padres failed to mount another threat until the bottom of the ninth inning. With one out, Mark Kotsay pinch-hit for Chris Denorfia and singled to left field.
Yasmani Grandal then pinch hit for Cameron Maybin and singled, Kotsay taking second base, but Jesus Guzman popped out and pinch-hitter Carlos Quentin grounded out to end the game. Andrew Werner took the loss to fall to 2-3, while Ryan Vogelsong got the win to improve to 14-9 and Santiago Casilla recorded his 25th save.
Logan Forsythe remained sidelined with a sore right knee on Friday, replaced in the lineup again by Andy Parrino, who is now hitless in his last 5 game appearances. Forsythe is considered day-to-day.
Saturday, the Giants and Padres will face off again for game two of the series. Left-handed starting pitcher Madison Bumgarner (16-10, 3.26) will go for the Giants while the Padres send Eric Stults (7-3, 2.81) to the mound. Game time is at 5:35 PM PDST, heard on XX 1090 AM and seen on Fox Sports San Diego. The first 25,000 fans in attendance will receive Padres fan appreciation t-shirt. This offer does not apply for executives of Time Warner Cable or AT&T U-verse.
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