Jesse Chavez, Oakland A’s stifle San Francisco Giants


Jesse Chavez pitched six scoreless innings, and Alberto Callaspo knocked in two runs with a fifth-inning double, as the Oakland A’s defeated the San Francisco Giants, 5-0, Monday night, in the first of four games being played between the two clubs this week in the annual Bay Bridge Series.

The game was tight through the first five innings, as Ryan Vogelsong pitched out of one jam after another, keeping the Giants in the game, while San Francisco managed a total of only five hits, all of them singles.

A key point came in the third inning of the game for San Francisco, when Vogelsong allowed two runners on base with nobody out, but got John Jaso to fly deep to center field, moving Craig Gentry to third, and then quickly got Yoenis Cespedes to pop out to Posey, and Brandon Moss to ground out to Joe Panik, in shallow right field.

Vogelsong’s moxie carried over to the fourth, when he made Josh Donaldson look bad, swinging at consecutive change-ups for the second and third swinging strikes of the lead-off at-bat.  Though Stephen Vogt followed with a double, Vogelsong induced fly balls to center field from both Jed Lowrie and Alberto Callaspo to end the inning.

Leading off the fifth, Craig Gentry whipped a little National League on the Giants, by getting on base via a questionable hit-by-pitch call, and then advancing to second on a stolen base.  Coco Crisp’s perfect bunt-single got him to third, and he scored on a ground-out by John Jaso.  

That would be all the A’s would get in the fifth, but Vogelsong’s luck ran out in the sixth when he was replaced in the game by Juan Gutierrez, with two on and one out, and Gutierrez immediately gave up a double to Alberto Callaspo, increasing the A’s lead to 3-0.

The two runs the A’s scored in the seventh were a personal gift from Brandon Crawford, who simply tried to do more than was possible.  The inning began when John Jaso hit a ball that Juan Gutierrez deflected and Crawford bare-handed, and then threw away trying to get Jaso at first.

Yoenis Coepedes then hit a blistering ball to Crawford’s right, which he made a great play on to spear a wicked hop, and then threw the ball past Joaquin Arias, in an attempt to get Jaso going to third, leaving runners at second and third.  Brandon Moss knocked in Jaso with a sac fly and Josh Donaldson knocked in Cespedes with a base hit up the middle, and the A’s increased their lead to 5-0.  

The only Giant with more than one hit was Arias, who had two singles in his role as Pablo Sandoval’s replacement.  Pablo is day-to-day after being hit by a pitch over the weekend in San Diego.

Though Juan Gutierrez’ line officially read two runs on three hits, he also gave up the double to Callaspo that plated two runs, but they were charged to Vogelsong.  After Gutierrez left, Javier Lopez and Yusmeiro Petit, who pitched the eighth inning, finished matters up.

This was a disappointing opener of the Bay Bridge Series for San Francisco, not so much because they lost, but because they were thoroughly dominated.  Oakland came in hot, having just swept four from the Toronto Blue Jays, so it was up to the Giants to make a statement.

The sound of silence spoke volumes.