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Giants first win is a blowout

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April 2, 2011 | Leave Comment

LOS ANGELES — After going winless in his first 14 starts against the Dodgers, Matt Cain has proven more than able ever since.

The right-hander scattered five hits over six innings, Aubrey Huff and Freddy Sanchez drove in three runs each and the San Francisco Giants won 10-0 on Saturday for their first win of the season.

“He’s always been tough, but it seems like over the last couple of years, he’s been using more of his pitches and he’s turned into a handful,” new Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said of Cain.

After his long drought, Cain is 3-0 with a 1.30 ERA in his last four starts against the Dodgers, with his first win coming last season.

“It was like kind of looming over me, I never beat the Dodgers, so it was definitely nice to get the monkey off the back last year,” he said.

Cain (1-0) struck out three and walked none, picking up where he left off last season as one of the Giants’ most consistent starters and showing no signs of the right elbow inflammation that cost him nearly two weeks in the spring.

“Matt Cain was outstanding,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “He had good command of all his pitches. I was confident he would be himself. You could tell he wasn’t hesitant on any pitch.”

Miguel Tejada added two RBIs for the defending World Series champions, who had committed five errors in dropping a pair of one-run games to the rival Dodgers. But they backed Cain with ample offense and clean defense to avoid equaling their worst start since moving to San Francisco in 1958.

“The guys weren’t afraid to get into counts and weren’t afraid to take those two-out hits,” Cain said, “so that shows the confidence those guys have that they weren’t worried about not getting the runners in before and stepping up when they needed to.”

It was the Giants’ largest margin of victory over their rivals since Oct. 3, 2004, when they beat them by the same score.

“It’s really special for me,” said the 36-year-old Tejada, who hit in the leadoff spot with his newest team for the first time since 1999. “We just need somebody to start and then everybody follow. We’re all happy today.”

Ted Lilly (0-1) gave up four runs and six hits in 4 2-3 innings, struck out three and walked one for the Dodgers in an inauspicious season debut for the left-hander. Lilly signed a $33 million, three-year contract in October, the most lucrative of any of the free agents who signed with the club in the offseason.

Lilly was roughed up in the fifth, when the Giants got to him for three runs.

“Certainly that fifth turned into a disaster,” he said. “I was kind of erratic in the zone. I was throwing strikes, but they weren’t quality strikes. I got behind in the count too many times and didn’t throw quality pitches when I had to.”

With two outs, Tejada’s RBI single to left field scored Aaron Rowand, who singled and advanced on Lilly’s balk. Sanchez followed with a double down the left field line that scored Tejada.
Huff singled home Sanchez to chase Lilly and extend the Giants’ lead to 4-0. Buster Posey then singled off Mike MacDougal before Pat Burrell struck out swinging to end the inning.

The Giants batted around in the sixth when they added four runs off Kenley Jansen. Mark DeRosa’s double scored rookie Brandon Belt, who walked and stole second. Sanchez’s bloop single over first base scored DeRosa before Huff’s two-run single to center field made it 8-0.

Sanchez homered on the second pitch from Lance Cormier in the eighth.

Huff made a charging catch on Tony Gwynn Jr. in the seventh to prevent the Dodgers from scoring.

The Associated Press

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