Giants hand Braves sixth straight loss
San Frans first sweep in Atlanta since 1988
THE SAN FRANCISCO Giants put together quite a mind-boggling statistic in their first three-game sweep at Turner Field.
San Francisco did not have a hit with a runner in scoring position, but still won three straight over the Atlanta Braves. Credit belongs to strong pitching and seven home runs.
Brandon Crawford hit two home runs and Madison Bumgarner helped the Giants beat Atlanta, 4-1, yesterday, handing the Braves their sixth straight loss.
The Giants were 0-for-4 with runners in scoring position yesterday and 0-for-7 in the series. Still, the NL West leaders left town with a five-game winning streak.
"That's incredible," manager Bruce Bochy said. "What a job our pitching did here . . . The long ball, that's what won it for us because we couldn't get a hit. They had great pitching as well."
It was San Francisco's first sweep in Atlanta since 1988 - long before Turner Field opened in 1997 and before Bumgarner was born in 1989.
The Braves' skid is their longest since an eight-game slide in May 2012. Atlanta, which leads the NL East, was held to one run in each of its losses to San Francisco.
"We've been struggling," said Dan Uggla, who was 0-for-4 and is hitting .190. "We've got to turn the corner and just turn this thing around. Like, now."
Bumgarner (3-3) allowed one unearned run and three hits in six innings, striking out nine.
Improved control allowed Bumgarner to earn his first win since April 11. He walked only one batter after issuing a combined eight passes in his last three starts.
"I still felt like I got behind a lot of times when I wanted to get ahead, but it's a big step forward," Bumgarner said.
Santiago Casilla pitched the ninth for his first save. Closer Sergio Romo was rested after recording saves in two straight games.
Crawford gave the Giants a 2-1 lead with his homer off Alex Wood (2-5) in the fourth. Crawford hit a two-run shot off Jordan Walden in the eighth for his first career multihomer game. He began the day with only one homer this season.
Wood lost his fourth straight start, again receiving almost no run support. The one run scored by Atlanta is the only offense Wood has received in that span, which included back-to-back 1-0 losses.
The lefthander has a 3.00 ERA after allowing two runs on seven hits and one walk in five innings.
Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez, who hinted he may tweak his slumping lineup, said an offensive turnaround is coming.
"Somebody's going to have to pay for it," Gonzalez said. "Sooner or later somebody's going to come in here and we're going to score 10 runs a game for 2 or 3 weeks. That's my mindset I've got going on right now."
In other NL games
* At Miami, Jeff Baker hit a game-winning double off the wall with two outs in the ninth inning, and the Marlins beat the Los Angeles Dodgers, 5-4.
Rightfielder Yasiel Puig retreated and made a leaping try for an acrobatic catch but slammed against the fence, and the ball deflected off it and hit him in the face. Puig collapsed to his stomach and was slow to rise, and he walked off the field with an arm around a trainer.
* At Cincinnati, Chris Heisey scored from first base on Todd Frazier's double into the leftfield corner as the Reds came from behind for a 4-3 win over the Milwaukee Brewers in 10 innings.
* At San Diego, Cameron Maybin reached base after an overturned umpire's call, then scored on Yonder Alonso's slow grounder in the ninth inning as the Padres beat the Arizona Diamondbacks, 4-3, to avoid a three-game sweep.
* At Denver, Dillon Gee (3-1) threw six scoreless innings and David Wright had one of New York's four RBI doubles as the Mets salvaged the final game of their series against Colorado, beating the Rockies, 5-1.
* At Chicago, Yadier Molina's two-run single in the ninth inning lifted St. Louis over the Cubs, 5-4, to enable to Cardinals to avert a weekend sweep.
In AL games
* At New York, Wil Myers hit an inside-the-park homer, his latest big hit against the Yankees, and drove in four runs as the Tampa Bay Rays battered an ineffective CC Sabathia (3-4) in a 5-1 victory.
In Rays news, relief pitcher Heath Bell was cut in a costly move for a normally thrifty team. Needing a fresh long man in the bullpen, the Rays recalled righthander Nathan Karns from Triple A and designated Bell. Tampa Bay has 10 days to trade or release Bell, or to send him outright to the minors if he consents.
* At Cleveland, Dayan Viciedo hit a three-run homer in the ninth inning off John Axford, lifting the Chicago White Sox over the Indians, 4-3, and stopping a four-game losing streak.
* At Boston, Yoenis Cespedes drove in the go-ahead run on an infield single with the bases loaded in the 10th and the Oakland Athletics averted a three-game sweep with a 3-2 win over the Red Sox.
* At Minneapolis, Phil Hughes (3-1) won his third start in a row, Trevor Plouffe and Kurt Suzuki hit two-run doubles and the Minnesota Twins beat the Baltimore Orioles, 5-2.
* At Kansas City, Justin Verlander (4-1) took a no-hit bid into the sixth inning and won his fourth straight decision, leading Detroit over the Royals, 9-4, and extending the Tigers' winning streak to a season-high five games.
* At Houston, Robinson Cano and Willie Bloomquist each drove in two runs to help the Seattle Mariners break away in a four-run third inning and beat the Astros, 8-7.
* At Anaheim, Prince Fielder had a pair of RBI doubles to end a drought of 39 at-bats without an extra-base hit and Yu Darvish (2-1) worked into the seventh inning to earn his first victory in almost a month as the Texas Rangers trounced the Los Angeles Angels, 14-3.
In an interleague game
* At Pittsburgh, Colby Rasmus hit a grand slam and Melky Cabrera added a two-run homer, leading Dustin McGowan (2-1) and the Toronto Blue Jays over the Pirates, 7-2. It was just the fourth win in 13 games for Toronto, which prevented the Pirates from completing their first series sweep of the season.