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Zito sharp again as Giants survive Rockies rally

CBSSports.com wire reports
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SAN FRANCISCO -- Something about the heat of a wild card race has Barry Zito looking a lot like a Cy Young Award winner.

Zito carried a shutout into the ninth inning, Pablo Sandoval homered and the San Francisco Giants got within a game of the Colorado Rockies for the NL wild card by beating them 5-3 Saturday night.

"Since the All-Star break I don't know who's been better," Giants' manager Bruce Bochy said. "This guy can pitch. He has a history of being an outstanding pitcher and he's showing that. We're not going to be able to slug it out with anybody. We need our pitchers and Barry has stepped up."

Randy Winn, Juan Uribe, Nate Schierholtz and Eli Whiteside also drove in runs for the Giants, who won for the fourth time in five games.

"There's no better feeling than to back our pitcher," Schierholtz said. "He's had a tough couple of years and he's really bounced back this year. He's got it all together and in these kind of must-win games he came out and did his job like he has all year."

Brad Hawpe homered and Seth Smith drove in two runs for the Rockies, who lost their fourth in a row, tying their longest slide of the season.

Zito (9-11) allowed one run on eight hits over 8 1/3 innings. He walked one and struck out seven.

"It was imperative that I was aggressive out there," Zito said. "I didn't want to give them any leeway. I've been focusing more on being aggressive, throwing my best stiff out there and see what happens."

Zito was even complimentary about the fans who have booed him in the past.

"I'm interpreting things differently," he said. "It's fun to have them so involved. They feed us out there and they are part of the reason we play so well at home."

Jason Marquis (14-9) allowed five runs on nine hits over six innings.

"I just didn't get the job done," Marquis said. "The only mistake I feel I made was the pitch to Whiteside, the line drive to center. The Giants have a lot of energy in their home park and they outplayed us in every facet of the game."

Hawpe's home run ended the Giants' streak of 22 innings without allowing an earned run, including the last 14 against the Rockies.

Pinch hitter Seth Smith singled home a pair of runs in the top of the ninth and pinch hitter Todd Helton singled before Brian Wilson came on to get Clint Barmes to fly out for his 32nd save in 38 chances.

"I was encouraged by what we did offensively in the ninth inning," Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. "Until then, we hadn't done too much offensively not only this series but you can go back to the second game of the Dodgers' series."

Marquis had a single and a sacrifice bunt and was the only Rockies runner to reach third base until Hawpe's blast.

Sandoval, who homered leading off the second, had three hits before leaving after the sixth. Uribe had two hits.

"Numbers speak for themselves," Marquis said. "He's a free swinger and you have to make pitches on him. He gets the barrel to the ball as consistent as anyone in the game."

Eugenio Velez drew a walk with one out in the third and raced to third on Edgar Renteria's single to left. Winn followed with his sacrifice fly.

The Giants added three runs in the sixth on Uribe's double, Schierholtz's sacrifice fly and Whiteside's first career triple.

Zito is 4-2 with a 1.77 ERA since the All-Star Break and is a career 74-38 in the second half of the season. He also improved to 105-6 in his career when receiving at least four runs of support.

Notes

  • 2000 NL MVP Jeff Kent was honored on the Giants' Wall of Fame before the game.
  • Zito struck out the side to start the game for the first time since July 29, 2001 as a member of the Oakland A's against the Kansas City Royals.
  • Sandoval got the Giants' 50th 'splash hit' since the new park opened in 2000.
  • Marquis allowed five or more runs in an NL park other than Coors Field for the first time since allowing six in Arizona on April 20.
  • Rockies' C Yorvit Torrealba singled in the third to match his career best with a nine-game hitting streak.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Barry Zito, who is 4-2 with a 1.77 ERA since the All-Star break, strikes out seven.  (AP)
Barry Zito, who is 4-2 with a 1.77 ERA since the All-Star break, strikes out seven. (AP)

Players of the Game
San Francisco

P. Sandoval
AB 3
R 2
H 3
HR 1
RBI 1
San Francisco

B. Zito
IP 8.1
H 8
ER 1
BB 1
K 7
 
Colorado Rockies
Eric Young Jr., CF4010011 .263
   a- Todd Helton, PH1010000 .323
Clint Barmes, 2B5010014 .245
Troy Tulowitzki, SS4000031 .278
Garrett Atkins, 1B3010100 .226
Brad Hawpe, RF4111004 .299
Ryan Spilborghs, LF4010011 .254
Ian Stewart, 3B4120012 .226
Yorvit Torrealba, C4120002 .276
Jason Marquis, P1010000 .204
   b- Carlos Gonzalez, PH1000011 .291
    Joe Beimel, P0000000 .000
    Matt Herges, P0000000 .000
   c- Seth Smith, PH1012000 .296
Totals36312318  
a-singled for Young in the 9th
b-struck out for Marquis in the 7th
c-singled for Herges in the 9th
Batting
HR - Brad Hawpe (19, Zito)
SH - Jason Marquis (8)
RBI - Brad Hawpe (76), Seth Smith 2 (38)
2-OUT RBI - Seth Smith 2 (12)
CS - Clint Barmes (9, 2nd base by Zito/Whiteside)
Team LOB - 8
Colorado Rockies
Jason Marquis (L,14-9) 6955121 3.60
Joe Beimel 1000100 3.51
Matt Herges 1000010 3.34
Pitches-Strikes - Jason Marquis 91-61, Joe Beimel 15-10, Matt Herges 10-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jason Marquis 11-5, Joe Beimel 1-2, Matt Herges 2-0
Batters Faced - Jason Marquis 28, Joe Beimel 4, Matt Herges 3
San Francisco Giants
Eugenio Velez, CF-LF3100111 .275
Edgar Renteria, SS4010000 .259
Randy Winn, LF-RF3001000 .264
Pablo Sandoval, 3B3231000 .336
    Ryan Rohlinger, 3B0000100 .000
Travis Ishikawa, 1B4110003 .261
Juan Uribe, 2B4121000 .274
Nate Schierholtz, RF3011000 .279
    Brian Wilson, P0000000 .000
Eli Whiteside, C4011022 .233
Barry Zito, P3000002 .133
    Sergio Romo, P0000000 .000
    Jeremy Affeldt, P0000000 .500
    Aaron Rowand, CF0000000 .275
Totals3159523  
Batting
2B - Juan Uribe (21, Marquis), Nate Schierholtz (16, Marquis)
3B - Eli Whiteside (1, Marquis)
HR - Pablo Sandoval (21, Marquis)
SF - Randy Winn (6), Nate Schierholtz (5)
RBI - Randy Winn (47), Pablo Sandoval (75), Juan Uribe (32), Nate Schierholtz (27), Eli Whiteside (8)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Nate Schierholtz 1
DP - Ishikawa-Renteria, Whiteside-Uribe
San Francisco Giants
Barry Zito (W,9-11) 8.1811171 3.94
Sergio Romo 0.1222010 5.04
Jeremy Affeldt0100000 1.85
Brian Wilson (S,32) 0.1100000 2.93
WP - Jeremy Affeldt (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Barry Zito 112-72, Sergio Romo 13-8, Jeremy Affeldt 5-3, Brian Wilson 7-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Barry Zito 8-8
Batters Faced - Barry Zito 32, Sergio Romo 3, Jeremy Affeldt 1, Brian Wilson 2
Game Information
Attendance - 41200
Game Time - 2:36
Temperature - 75
Umpires - Home - Wally Bell, First Base - Chad Fairchild, Second Base - Mike Winters, Third Base - Marty Foster