Warning: This game was not pretty, read at your own risk — but hey it’s Spring!
San Francisco Giants’ (6-4) starters came into Saturday afternoon’s game against the Seattle Mariners (8-3) with just one earned run given up in 23 innings thus far in Spring Training.
Now they have five, all credited to the right arm of Ryan Vogelsong
The damage came early in this one.
The 36-year-old starter gave up four earned runs and faced eight hitters in the first frame. After a leadoff single from Mariners’ center fielder Endy Chavez, shortstop Brad Miller ripped a two-run home run.
Second baseman Ty Kelly followed with a double.
After two consecutive outs, Vogelsong gave up another dinger – this time off the bat of right fielder Michael Saunders.
Vogelsong’s first inning line? 5 hits, 4 ER, K, 2 HRs, 2B.
Through his first five innings of the spring, Vogelsong gave up four hits, one earned run, struck out two and walked none.
Is it panic time for the aging starter? Considering his tumultuous 2013 campaign that saw him post a 5.73 ERA – including a 6.41 ERA in September – that might be the natural tendency. But, it’s important to keep in mind the nature of Spring Training – to learn and work on things. If the big innings are still happening three weeks from now, then it might be time to get a bit concerned. For all we know this was an aberration, so let us move along to the rest of the game.
Oh yeah, that wasn’t that great either, for nearly everyone.
Vogelsong threw 60 pitches through 2 1/3. He gave up two more hits, walked a batter, committed an error and gave up another RBI to Saunders before yielding to Yusmeiro Petit with two runners still on.
Vogelsong’s ERA went up to 6.14 if you’re keeping track early.
Petit, who came in with his own abysmal 23.63 ERA, couldn’t hold them on and ended up surrendering a total of four more runs in the third — none of them earned due to a Juan Perez error — and the score went to 9-0.
At least these games don’t count, right?
San Francisco’s first hit off Seattle starter Erasmo Ramirez came in the form of a rocket to third off the bat of Pablo Sandoval in the fourth inning. The svelte version of Panda raised his spring average to .333 with the base knock.
Petit lasted 2 2/3, gave up 2 runs (none earned), 3 hits and actually lowered his ERA to 12.60 before Jeremy Affeldt took over and pitched a scoreless top of the 6th.
Ehire Adrianza continued his assault on forcing himself a spot on the opening day roster, ripping a double to the wall in right to lead off the bottom of the inning.
After a Gary Brown can-of-corn (he’s now 3 for 12 this spring), Mark Minicozzi walked. Highly touted catching prospect Andrew Susac pulled a double down the line in left scoring both Adrianza and Minicozzi and the Giants were on the board.
Javier Lopez took over in the 7th inning for Affeldt and it wasn’t pretty. The Giants’ prized lefty gave up three earned on three hits, including a Dustin Ackley triple. He got out of the inning with a double play ball, but raised his spring ERA to 9.00 and the score to 12-2.
San Francisco managed another run in the 7th, and then the 8th happened.
Closer Sergio Romo (33.00 ERA) continued his early control struggles and then some. He gave up three singles, two walks and three runs without recording an out. Jake Dunning entered and allowed two of the inherited runners to score, bringing the total to 17-3.
After yet another run in the 9th, given up by Mason Tobin, we had our final score: Mariners 18, Giants 3.
Yep, it was a football score in Scottsdale today and hopefully a learning experience for all.
Affeldt: IP, K
Vogelsong: 2.1 IP, 6 H, 7 R, 4 ER, BB, 2 K, 2 HRs, 2B.
Susac: 1-3, 2B, 2 RBI
Adrianza: 1-2, 2B, R