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Giants’ offense still cold in loss to Dodgers

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POSTED September 25, 2013 1:19 a.m.

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Giants manager Bruce Bochy described his team’s offense as being “cold right now.”

He might have been talking about the entire season for the defending World Series champs.

San Francisco struggled at the plate for the fifth straight game Tuesday night, a problem that has plagued Bochy’s ballclub all year.

“We couldn’t get guys on base,” Bochy said after the Giants were held to five hits in a 2-1 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers. “We didn’t hit too many balls hard tonight.”

The Giants managed just four singles — two by leadoff hitter Angel Pagan — and a home run by light-hitting Tony Abreu. Beyond that, it was another frustrating night for a club that has scored only six runs over the last 49 innings.

The latest flop spoiled another solid start by Matt Cain.

Cain (8-10) pitched seven strong innings but took the loss after giving up home runs to Matt Kemp and Yasiel Puig. Cain, who will make one more start this season, struck out four and walked three.

“I made two big mistakes and that cost us,” Cain said. “It’s not easy to score runs against those guys. I just wish I didn’t make two bad pitches.”

Hyun-Jin Ryu and two relievers combined on the five-hitter. Carl Crawford added three hits for the NL West champions, who have won three straight.

The Giants pushed only one runner past first base and were held to no more than one run for the third time in four games.

Ryu (14-7) struck out six and walked one to tie Shelby Miller of St. Louis for most wins by a rookie in the National League. The left-hander retired 13 of his first 15 batters until Abreu’s home run, then set down eight of the next 10 before giving way to Brian Wilson.

“He has four pitches and had good command of them,” Bochy said. “He was on top of his game. He kept us off balance all night.”

Los Angeles manager Don Mattingly had Ryu warm up to begin the eighth before calling for Wilson. The bearded former Giants closer, who was so instrumental in the franchise’s World Series run in 2010, received a mixed response from the crowd at AT&T Park as he trotted in from the bullpen.

Facing his former club for the third time this season, Wilson retired all three batters he faced, striking out pinch-hitter Gregor Blanco and Juan Perez looking.

“I had faced them before, so I got (nerves) out of the way then,” Wilson said.

Kenley Jansen worked the ninth for his career-high 28th save. He struck out Pablo Sandoval with the potential tying run at second to end it.

San Francisco didn’t get much going all night.

Pagan singled twice for the Giants, whose only other hits came on an infield single by Cain in the fifth and a single by Buster Posey in the ninth.

Cain pitched with runners on base in each of the first four innings but worked out of each jam. In the fourth he walked the bases loaded, then got Mark Ellis to strike out looking for the third out.

Puig’s towering home run to center with one out in the fifth ended the shutout bid.

Abreu, starting at second base after Bochy opted to shut down Marco Scutaro for the remainder of the season, tied it with his second homer in the bottom half.

It was one of the few mistakes Ryu made.

Ryu also singled leading off the seventh but strayed too far off first base and was picked off by Posey.

NOTES: Cain has allowed a career-high 23 home runs this season. ... Pagan is batting .312 in 20 games since coming off the disabled list. ... San Francisco minor league 3B Nathanael Javier (Dominican Summer League) was suspended 50 games for violating baseball’s minor league drug program.


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