Sunday, April 20, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Zito struggles, Giants lose 7-3

Rob Maaddi
PHILADELPHIA — Barry Zito may want to stay home the next time the San Francisco Giants hit the road.

Carlos Ruiz and Michael Young hit two-run homers to back John Lannan, and the Philadelphia Phillies beat the Giants 7-3 Tuesday night to snap an eight-game losing streak.

Zito (4-8) gave up four runs and five hits in 3 1/3 innings. The 2002 AL Cy Young Award winner is 0-7 with a 9.97 ERA on the road.

“I don’t feel good about not keeping my team in the game and wearing out the bullpen,” Zito said. “Not getting through five innings is not very good.”

The Giants last won a road start by Zito in Game 5 of the NLCS last year against St. Louis.

“The team is scuffling right now and I wanted to go out and stop it,” Zito said. “I lost focus on a couple pitches and didn’t make good pitches.”

The defending World Series champion Giants have lost five in a row and eight of nine. They came off a 3-7 homestand that left them last in the NL West.

With Wednesday’s non-waiver trade deadline approaching and neither team going anywhere, several players could be changing uniforms before the next pitch.

The Giants might consider moving two-time All-Star outfielder Hunter Pence and lefty Javier Lopez. Pence was traded from Houston to Philadelphia on July 29, 2011. The Phillies sent him to the Giants last July 31.

“I try not to pay much attention to that,” Pence said. “Just focusing on what I can control. I’m trying to do my best to block it out.”

The possibility that Philadelphia deals Young increased when the team called up third baseman Cody Asche from Triple-A. Manager Charlie Manuel said Asche will be in the lineup Wednesday, so Young will either play first base or move to a contender if he waives his no-trade clause.

Ruiz, All-Star lefty Cliff Lee and closer Jonathan Papelbon also could be traded by the Phillies.

Lannan (3-4) allowed three runs and seven hits in seven innings.

“We couldn’t get the offense going,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “That’s been the frustrating thing during the stretch. We kept talking about it. We just had to get the bats going. We’ve tried everything.”

Ruiz gave the Phillies a 4-2 lead in the fourth when he lined a shot just over the left field wall. Ruiz, an All-Star last year, had not homered in 176 at-bats since last Sept. 25 against Washington. He began the year with a 25-game suspension for using a banned amphetamine.

Young connected off Guillermo Moscoso in the seventh to make it 6-2.

Pablo Sandoval drove in San Francisco’s first two runs. He had a sacrifice fly in the first inning and his bloop single to right with two outs in the third drove in a run to tie it at 2.

Zito struggled through a 45-pitch first inning, allowing two runs. Delmon Young singled in a run with two outs and John Mayberry Jr. walked with the bases loaded.

“It was a weird one,” Zito said. “Three of them were just placed. (Chase) Utley’s hit was just out of reach.”

Notes: Reigning NL MVP Buster Posey was scratched from the lineup because of an upset stomach. “He’s washed out,” Bochy said, adding Posey may not play Wednesday. … The Giants called up OF Roger Kieschnick and INF Brett Pill from Triple-A Fresno. … Dominic Chianese, who played Uncle Junior on HBO’s “The Sopranos,” sang the national anthem. … Chad Gaudin (4-2, 2.77) starts for the Giants vs. Kyle Kendrick (9-7, 3.96) on Wednesday night.

The Associated Press

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