Colorado at San Francisco

W: M. Cain (15-5) L: T. Chatwood (4-5)
HR: COL - None   SF - P. Sandoval (9)

Giants 7, Rockies 1 wire reports

SAN FRANCISCO -- Matt Cain was a hard-luck loser for the San Francisco Giants, the most consistent starter in one of baseball's best rotations who received little run support and often fell short despite solid performances.

It's been a different story this season.

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Cain pitched eight solid innings to earn his career-best 15th win, Pablo Sandoval homered for the first time in two months and the Giants moved another game closer to clinching the NL West title with a 7-1 victory over the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday night.

After using 17 relievers over the past three games, leave it to San Francisco's "workhorse" to be its first pitcher since Barry Zito on Aug. 23 to last at least eight innings and give manager Bruce Bochy a break from all those walks to the mound.

"I'll have to get on the treadmill tonight to get my workout," Bochy joked.

Sandoval's three-run shot in the first inning off Tyler Chatwood (4-5) was his ninth homer of the season and helped hand Cain (15-5) another milestone in a season full of them. With the second-place Dodgers splitting a doubleheader in Washington, San Francisco (86-63) also lowered its magic number to clinch the division to five.

Cain allowed four hits, struck out eight and walked four. Chris Nelson scored on D.J. LeMahieu's flyout in the fifth for the only blemish on Cain's latest gem.

"It feels good to finally get past that 14 number," Cain said. "But you know what? We've got games left, and I don't want to stop now."

Gregor Blanco added three singles and two RBI, and Jose Mijares pitched a perfect ninth to give San Francisco its third straight win and seventh in the last eight games.

Chatwood allowed eight hits and three runs in four innings, extending his winless streak to four straight starts as the Rockies dropped their fifth in a row.

Even seemingly unhittable pitches for Colorado these days are proving otherwise.

Sandoval reached in front of the plate to dig out an 0-2 slider near his ankles, pulling it off the right-field foul pole to give the Giants a 3-0 lead on what he jokingly called a "back-foot slider." The switch-hitting Sandoval had gone 161 at-bats since his last home run July 8 against Pittsburgh's A.J. Burnett. He was even teased by pitcher Madison Bumgarner -- who homered last week in Colorado -- and Cain during batting practice.

"He hadn't hit a home run since like three years ago," Cain said, laughing.

"About time," Sandoval said.

Chatwood just shook his head on the mound at what Sandoval did with his pitch.

"I've seen him do it here, I've seen him do it in Denver," Rockies manager Jim Tracy said. "I think the intent was to bounce the breaking ball with two strikes, and he didn't."

In the pitcher-friendly confines of AT&T Park, the home run was just the 24th at home for the Giants this year, which has frustrated hitters but also played into San Francisco's strength.

Cain controlled Colorado's depleted lineup in his typical solid and steady style.

The only hits the hard-throwing righty allowed over the first 15 batters were singles by Nelson. And Cain wiggled out of his only jam when he got Carlos Gonzalez to ground out to second with the bases loaded for the final out of the fifth.

Cain went 14-8 in 2009 and has won at least 12 games in four of his previous eight seasons. Cain, who started the All-Star game for the National League, improved to 14-0 this season when the Giants score at least three runs.

Brandon Belt hit an RBI double and Blanco had a two-run single in the fifth to extend San Francisco's lead to 6-1. Blanco also stole his 23rd base after he singled in the fourth.

Buster Posey's bloop single in the sixth drove in another run and fans again showered the All-Star catcher with chants of "M-V-P! M-V-P!" He finished 2 for 4.

Cain eclipsed 200 innings for the sixth straight season.

"The wins, sometimes, there's so much luck involved," Bochy said. "We all know the tough luck that he's had, the tough losses he's had, 1-0, 2-1 and games like that. But he's always handled it well. That's a credit to who he is, his makeup. But things go right, you win 20. It's not always the best pitcher on the staff that wins 20. It's the guy that gets the most run support."


Cain is 28-5 when he throws at least eight innings. ... The Giants honored the runner-up U.S. Little League World Series team from Petaluma in Northern California during a pregame ceremony. Giants players also met with the team and signed autographs. ... Colorado's Jordan Pacheco had the day off because he will start at catcher in the early afternoon game Thursday. ... Jorge De La Rosa will make his first start for the Rockies since Tommy John elbow surgery last year when he faces fellow lefty Barry Zito (12-8, 4.21 ERA) in the series finale Thursday.

Copyright 2017 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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Players of the Game
San Francisco

P. Sandoval
AB 5
R 2
H 3
HR 1
San Francisco

M. Cain
IP 8.0
H 4
ER 1
BB 4
K 8

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Dexter Fowler, CF1000311 .302
Josh Rutledge, SS3000112 .290
Carlos Gonzalez, LF4000023 .305
Wilin Rosario, C4000020 .253
Tyler Colvin, 1B4000020 .285
Chris Nelson, 3B4120020 .296
Charlie Blackmon, RF4020001 .260
DJ LeMahieu, 2B2001001 .270
Tyler Chatwood, P1000000 .250
   a- Matt McBride, PH1000000 .186
    Adam Ottavino, P0000000 .111
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   b- Andrew Brown, PH1000001 .242
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a-grounded out for Chatwood in the 5th
b-flied out for Escalona in the 7th
SF - DJ LeMahieu (2)
RBI - DJ LeMahieu (16)
Team LOB - 6
Outfield Assists - Charlie Blackmon 1
E - Wilin Rosario (13, Throwing)
Colorado Rockies
Tyler Chatwood (L,4-5) 4833021 5.73
Adam Ottavino 1433010 4.68
Edgmer Escalona 1211110 7.80
Matt Reynolds 1000120 4.42
Rob Scahill 1000010 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - Tyler Chatwood 84-56, Adam Ottavino 27-15, Edgmer Escalona 22-12, Matt Reynolds 14-7, Rob Scahill 12-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tyler Chatwood 5-5, Adam Ottavino 1-0, Rob Scahill 2-0
Batters Faced - Tyler Chatwood 20, Adam Ottavino 6, Edgmer Escalona 6, Matt Reynolds 4, Rob Scahill 3
San Francisco Giants
Angel Pagan, CF5220021 .291
Marco Scutaro, 2B4110102 .299
Pablo Sandoval, 3B5233012 .283
Buster Posey, C4021010 .334
Hunter Pence, RF4110003 .259
Brandon Belt, 1B3111112 .268
Gregor Blanco, LF4032011 .245
Brandon Crawford, SS4000013 .246
Matt Cain, P3010001 .157
    Jose Mijares, P0000000 .000
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Team LOB - 8
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Matt Cain (W,15-5) 8411480 2.86
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Pitches-Strikes - Matt Cain 116-74, Jose Mijares 13-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt Cain 11-4
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Game Information
Attendance - 41292
Game Time - 2:57
Temperature - 58
Umpires - Home - Ed Hickox, First Base - Chris Conroy, Second Base - Mark Carlson, Third Base - Angel Hernandez