Cliff Lee Dominates Giants Once Again
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A day after a demoralizing 12-run loss at home, the Philadelphia Phillies delivered just the kind of well-rounded victory manager Charlie Manuel had been seeking.
Having Cliff Lee on the mound in San Francisco sure helped the cause.
Lee shut down the Giants once again with eight strong innings in a ballpark where he thrives, Michael Young hit a two-run double among his three hits and the Phillies stopped San Francisco’s season-best six-game winning streak with a 6-2 victory Monday night.
“That’s more of what we are right there, no doubt,” Lee said. “We definitely haven’t been playing up to our potential. We’ve been far short of that, to be honest with you. I think tonight is more of a real depiction of what we are. I expect us to pick it up a little bit. We underperformed this first month, and it’s time for us to turn it on. Tonight was a good start in that direction.”
Domonic Brown hit a solo home run and Delmon Young and Jimmy Rollins each added sacrifice flies as the Phillies began a seven-game trip with a nice win after losing Roy Halladay to the disabled list earlier in the day.
Lee (3-2) outpitched fellow southpaw Madison Bumgarner and kept intact his perfect career regular-season record against the Giants.
Hunter Pence hit a solo homer, double and single against his former club. His sixth homer of the season, on a 3-2 changeup in the second inning, snapped a 21-inning scoreless stretch by Lee against San Francisco.
Lee is 5-0 with a 0.88 ERA in six regular-season starts against the Giants, including 4-0 with a 0.84 ERA in five of those outings at AT&T Park.
He struck out six and didn’t walk a batter for the first time this season in a 102-pitch performance. Lee also singled in the fourth for his third hit of 2013.
“He was on top of his game and we just didn’t do much offensively,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “He’s one of the best. He works fast, he pounds the strike zone. We knew we had our work cut out. We know how tough he is and he was good tonight. Pence had a great night, but it was a rough night for the rest of the group.”
The two runs and three of the five hits Lee allowed were to former Phillies teammate Pence, acquired by the Giants at last summer’s trade deadline.
“Take him out of the lineup and it would have been a really good day,” Lee said. “He was tough for me today. He’s got it figured out right now.”
Pence singled leading off the fifth and doubled on another changeup to start the eighth. He scored when shortstop Rollins threw wildly past first for an error after fielding Francisco Peguero’s infield single.
Jonathan Papelbon pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his sixth save in as many chances, and his 11th straight scoreless appearance. The Phillies bounced back from a 14-2 loss to the Marlins and a lost series in which they were outscored 16-2 over the final two games.
“I said it was a matter of time before we hit some balls in the air,” Manuel said. “Our offense came out and got us three runs quick. That was big.”
The Giants couldn’t keep their winning streak going on a night Hall of Famer Willie Mays was treated to the singing of “Happy Birthday” in the middle of the fourth. The “Say Hey Kid” tipped his cap from the suite level as the sellout crowd of 41,171 gave him a warm standing ovation on his 82nd birthday.
Philadelphia likes the energy in the Giants’ waterfront ballpark.
“It can be a boost. This place might have been perfect for us,” Michael Young said. “It’s a great place to play, it’s a great environment, fans are into the game and we’re playing, obviously, a very good club.”
Bumgarner (3-1) struck out seven but saw his winless stretch reach four starts since he won his initial three outings of the year.
Bumgarner escaped a bases-loaded jam in the first when he fielded Brown’s comebacker for the final out. Bumgarner walked Chase Utley, loading the bases again with two outs in the second, then Michael Young lined a two-run double to right.
Bumgarner received a mound visit from pitching coach Dave Righetti and threw a wild pitch past Ryan Howard, bringing home another run before the slugger struck out.
The three runs already were a season high. H was tagged for a season-high eight hits as his ERA rose from 1.55 to 2.31.
Brown followed Delmon Young’s fifth-inning sacrifice fly with a drive over the right-field that bounced off the walkway and splashed into McCovey Cove.
Rollins added a sacrifice fly in the eighth after San Francisco added a run in the eighth.
San Francisco didn’t generate much against Lee, who was helped by three double plays.
“The normal Cliff Lee. He’s good, man,” the Giants’ Marco Scutaro said. “He keeps throwing strikes, using the corners. You just try to get him out of his rhythm when he misses, and he doesn’t miss that much. He has great command of all his pitches.”
San Francisco played without center fielder and leadoff man Angel Pagan for the second straight game as he nursed a strained right hamstring. Pagan went through agility work with the relievers in the outfield before the game and was expected back in the starting lineup Tuesday night.
NOTES: Lee is 12-5 vs. the NL West. … The Giants placed LHP Jose Mijares on the restricted list because his seven days on the bereavement list were up and he hadn’t returned in time from his grandmother’s funeral in Venezuela. He was expected to be activated Tuesday, when the club will have to make a roster move. … Halladay had an appointment scheduled Tuesday in Los Angeles with Dr. Lewis Yocum to examine his troublesome throwing shoulder.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.