Chris Stratton stymies contending Brewers, Giants win 2-0
SAN FRANCISCO — Catcher Nick Hundley came into the postgame scrum with a question of his own for pitcher Chris Stratton, razzing the rookie for a one-strikeout night.
“What was your thought on the punchout?” Hundley asked.
Stratton pitched six innings to run his scoreless streak to 12 2/3 innings over his past two outings, and the San Francisco Giants stymied the contending Milwaukee Brewers with a 2-0 win Monday night.
It was a night of missed chances as Milwaukee, which had won two in a row and six of seven, dropped 2 1/2 games back of the idle, NL Central-leading Chicago Cubs.
Brandon Crawford hit an RBI double to back Stratton (2-2) in his fourth major league start after he won at Washington his last time out — with 10 strikeouts that day and just the one Monday.
“I just left all the strikeouts in Washington, I guess,” he said on the eve of his 27th birthday.
Stratton’s scoreless streak is the longest by a Giants rookie starter since Chris Heston’s 16 1/3 innings from July 1-12, 2015. The Giants earned their first home shutout of the year, the last team in the majors to do so.
“That’s our first shutout here,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “Great job by him and the bullpen.”
Stratton took a liner off his left glute by Brewers starter Zach Davies (14-7) in the fifth but was fine.
Hundley added an RBI groundout on a night he played in place of Buster Posey, who had a scheduled day off but also was banged up after being drilled in the left side by a pitch from Phillies closer Hector Neris a day earlier.
Davies allowed seven hits and two runs, struck out five and walked two in six innings. He took his first road defeat of the season after a 7-0 start, dropping to just 14-4 away from home for his career.
The Brewers’ best chance came in the fourth, when Stephen Vogt hit a one-out single and tried to score on Orlando Arcia’s single one out later but was thrown out at the plate.
“It certainly was a quiet night,” said manager Craig Counsell, who celebrated his 47th birthday. “We didn’t find any holes. We couldn’t get one to drop.”
Sam Dyson finished for his 11th save in 12 chances as the Giants beat the Brewers for the 16th time in 20 games, going 10-1 at home.
San Francisco stranded baserunners on second in each of the first two innings before finally getting to Davies in the fourth. After Jarrett Parker walked, Hunter Pence hit an infield single on which shortstop Arcia stopped the ball with a 360-degree turn and made a perfect flip to Neil Walker. The second baseman tried to barehand the catch rather than use his glove and couldn’t keep hold of the ball as Parker advanced.
Bochy didn’t disagree with Posey that Neris hit the catcher with a pitch on purpose.
“I’ll say this, he’s an idiot,” Bochy said. “Well, it wasn’t just a little bit inside. … The same guy. I’ll say it, he’s an idiot. He showed it in Philadelphia when he was having words with (Eduardo) Nunez. I think that caused the radar to be up a little bit on what happened there (Sunday), and it wasn’t a glancing blow. It was at his ribs, the backside of his ribs. No, I’m not surprised. I would be upset, too.”
On Monday, Pablo Sandoval exited in the eighth after being hit in the left forearm by a pitch from Carlos Torres. Bochy said afterward Sandoval was “fine.”
Brewers: C Vogt, who played for Oakland until claimed off waivers June 25, came off the disabled list Friday and is still wearing a bulky brace on the left knee he sprained and sidelined him July 18. It can be tricky in his catcher’s crouch, but Vogt is figuring it out. He can go without in the weight room but wears it as a precaution for all baseball activities as there’s still some discomfort. “But it’s good enough for me to play and not hurt anything,” he said.
Giants: RHP Johnny Cueto wasn’t feeling well and had his rehab outing as he works back from tender spots on three fingers of his pitching hand pushed back to Tuesday with Triple-A Sacramento. … 2B Joe Panik (concussion symptoms) did a full round of baseball activities and was to undergo an exertion circuit test in the training room. If all went well, he was going to Sacramento to play a rehab game Tuesday, otherwise he would join Class A San Jose on Wednesday. He could return to the Giants lineup when the team hits the road Friday at Arizona.
Brewers: RHP Jimmy Nelson (9-6, 3.74 ERA) beat the Giants on June 7 at Miller Park.
Giants: RHP Jeff Samardzija (8-12, 4.79) is 1-5 in 11 career starts vs. Milwaukee but earned his first win against the Brewers on June 5.