Grindin’ With The Champs: Giants showing life

Sanchez, Lincecum, Cain
The Big Three, Giants version.

The Colorado Rockies have to be wondering what happened to them after a three-game sweep in San Francisco. The Giants, behind 3-1 on Friday night, tied the game in the eighth and won it 4-3 in the ninth. The Rockies, behind 2-0 on Saturday, tied it up and should have gone ahead in the seventh but wound up losing in the ninth 3-2. On Sunday, the Rockies failed to score and lost 3-0. Three games, five runs scored, only 10 runs allowed, but a sweep nonetheless. The moribund Giants surged back into the race with the kind of baseball they know so well — pitching, pitching, and more pitching. Speaking of pitching, The Big Three take on the Arizona Diamondbacks mid-week: Tim Lincecum on Tuesday, Jonathan Sanchez on Wednesday, and Matt Cain on Thursday. Then it’s back on the road for seven more games (three in Chicago, two in Colorado and two in Los Angeles). The Giants have played 22 road games (11-11) and only 12 home games (7-5) so far.

Andres Torres comes off the disabled Llst on Tuesday — that should be a boost for the club. The injury to Pablo Sandoval (out at least another month) really hurt a struggling offense, but fortunately super-sub Mike Fontenot responded with nine hits (four 2B, one 3B, one HR), seven walks, and five RBI since becoming the starting shortstop on April 30th. Miguel Tejada moved to third base when the Panda went down. Mark DeRosa will also likely be activated this week. Rookies Darren Ford and either Emmanuel Burriss orRyan Rohlinger will probably be optioned to triple-A Fresno to make room on the roster. Sunday’s winning pitcher Ryan Vogelsong has held his own (Giants are 3-0 in his starts) while subbing for starter Barry Zito, who is out with a foot injury. Wins haven’t been pretty or easy for the banged-up Giants in 2011, but a sweep against the first-place team fired up the fan base with some familiar 2010-style ball. The 18-14 Rockies hold a one-game lead over the 18-16 Giants.

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