SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Getting people on base against one of the stingiest pitchers in the National League wasn't much of an issue for Milwaukee.
Keeping them there was another story altogether.
The Brewers had three runners cut down on the bases, including Rickie Weeks who was thrown out at home trying to score in the fourth inning, and Milwaukee couldn't get anything going against San Francisco's bullpen in a 4-2 loss to the Giants on Saturday night.
``You try to do things so you can win the game before you have to get to their bullpen,' manager Ron Roenicke said. ``We had some chances, people in scoring position. They don't make many mistakes to give games away. They play tough when it's close.'
It helped the defending World Series that the Brewers ran themselves out of multiple scoring opportunities.
After Ryan Braun led off the fourth with a home run against Giants starter Ryan Vogelsong, Milwaukee missed a chance to add on and then spent the rest of the game trying to make up for it.
Weeks doubled with one out, but was thrown out at the plate by left fielder Cody Ross, sliding in a toe late on a sharp tag by catcher Chris Stewart. After Yuniesky Betancourt singled, Stewart faked a throw to second and caught Casey McGehee heading for the plate from third for an easy out.
After Schierholtz put San Francisco ahead 2-1 in the bottom of the inning with a two-run double, Nyjer Morgan shook off boos and hit an RBI double in the fifth to even the score. The San Francisco native, who taunted the home fans a night earlier with repeated hand gestures following a running grab against the wall in center, pumped his arms in the air after sliding into second.
Morgan was thrown out trying to take third on a ball in the dirt with Braun at the plate with two outs, and fans mockingly gave him an extended standing ovation.
``That's a pretty good pitching club over there, but we have some good hitters here, too,' Weeks said. ``I think we proved it today and last night. At the same time, somebody's got to win so they did their job today.'
Randy Wolf (6-8) gave up three runs on seven hits in six innings for the Brewers, who fell back into a tie with St. Louis in the NL Central.
Milwaukee scored twice off Vogelsong, who labored through five innings but regained the National League's best ERA, then couldn't do anything against five relievers who finished with four scoreless innings.
Vogelsong (8-1) allowed two runs on seven hits in one of his least spectacular outings of the season, finding yet another way to win. The journeyman All-Star notched enough innings for his 2.10 ERA to qualify for the lowest in the league again.
Nate Schierholtz drove in two runs and Aubrey Huff delivered the go-ahead sacrifice fly in the fifth. Brian Wilson pitched the ninth for his 30th save.
Vogelsong, pitching a day after his 34th birthday, has become the most reliable pitcher in one of baseball's best rotations. Almost as remarkable, the right-hander's only blemish this season remains a 1-0 loss to Florida on May 26 - the day San Francisco found out star catcher Buster Posey was out for the year.
Even on a night he was hardly at his best, Vogelsong's mistakes were minor.
Braun hit the first pitch of the fourth inning over the left-field wall to give the Brewers a 1-0 lead. The home run was Braun's 19th this season.
After Morgan's RBI double tied the game, the Giants followed that up by manufacturing a run the hard way. Mike Fontenot moved Aaron Rowand to second on a sacrifice bunt, and he went to third on Pablo Sandoval's infield single.
Huff lifted a sacrifice fly to left to put San Francisco ahead 3-2. Andres Torres added a pinch-hit RBI single in the eighth to give the Giants a 4-2 lead.
Relievers Santiago Casilla, Jeremy Affeldt, Sergio Romo, Javier Lopez and Wilson all held Milwaukee scoreless over the final four innings.
Notes: Brewers 1B Prince Fielder might get a rare day to rest Sunday with an off day scheduled Monday, Roenicke said. ... Weeks' stolen base in the second inning was the 100th of his career.
The Associated Press News Service
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