Gallardo roughed up in loss
Michael Morse and Pablo Sandoval each drove in three runs to lead the San Francisco Giants to a 7-4 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday night.
Ryan Vogelsong (7-8) gave up one run on seven hits in six innings for the Giants to win consecutive starts for the first time since May. On Friday, the right-hander allowed two hits in a complete game against the Mets.
Milwaukee's Yovani Gallardo (6-6) had a streak of 16 2-3-innings without giving up a run snapped in the first when he allowed three of them. The right-hander gave up four runs on nine hits and walked four in four innings. His only shorter outing this season was May 20 at Atlanta when he left after 3 1-3-innings with an ankle injury.
Morse hadn't had more than one RBI in a game since June 13 against Colorado, and the left fielder had only eight RBI in his previous 50 games.
But after a run-scoring single by Sandoval in the first, Morse's snapped a 1-for-11 skid with a two-out, two-run single to center for a 3-0 lead. In the fourth, his single to right with two outs gave San Francisco a 4-1 lead. The last time Morse had three RBI was May 29 for the Giants, who won for the fifth time in the last seven games.
Sandoval smashed a two-run homer to left for a 7-3 lead in the eighth, one day after the third baseman hit a three-run shot.
Carlos Gomez homered in the first for Milwaukee, Aramis Ramirez added a two-run single in the seventh and Khris Davis hit a solo homer in the ninth, but the Brewers fell to 3-6 in their last nine games.
Protecting first place
What creates more pressure, trying to protect a first-place lead over an entire season or trying to come from behind down the stretch?
“A good question,” Milwaukee Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said Wednesday.
The Brewers have been in first place in the NL Central, either alone or tied, since April 5, 123 consecutive days, a franchise record.
The previous club record for consecutive days in first place was 118 by the 2007 Brewers, from April 21 through Aug. 16. That club was in first place for a total of 135 days, also a franchise record, and was eight games up in late June before fading and finishing at 83-79, two games behind the Chicago Cubs.
The 2011 Brewers, who won a franchise-record 96 games and won the NL Central crown, spent 95 days in first place, including the final 64.
“Those last couple of months were really good,” said Roenicke. “We had that stretch that was real good over that part (of the season).
The 1982 club that won the AL East on the final day of the season in Baltimore was in first place for 84 days, including the last 65 in a row (tied with the Orioles entering the final game).
This year's club was 18 games above .500 (51-33) and 61/2 games up in the division before skidding through July with a 9-16 record. St. Louis pulled into a tie with the Brewers entering the final game before the break but Milwaukee won that day to finish the first half a game on top.
The Brewers have been tied with the Cardinals on two occasions since but remain one game ahead of St. Louis and 1 1/2 games of Pittsburgh.