SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Bruce Bochy has walked into the manager's office every day this September expecting his San Francisco Giants to show some life. That day has yet to come.
It likely won't this year.
After the latest scoreless performance to the rival Los Angeles Dodgers knocked the Giants 9 1/2 games behind Arizona in the NL West, Bochy finally vented about his team's horrendous offense and all but admitted the playoff race is over.
``We're bad right now with the bats,' he said. ``We're awful. There's no other way to say it.'
Dana Eveland combined with two relievers to throw a six-hitter, and the Dodgers delivered another blow to the Giants' dismal playoff hopes with a 3-0 victory over the defending World Series champions on Saturday night.
The pitching performance extended San Francisco's scoreless streak to 17 innings. The Giants have only had two runners reach third base in that span, and about all they can do now is play out the remainder of the season.
``You're obligated to go out there and give it your best,' Bochy said. ``We're fortunate to be here every game and have it sold out and have these great fans here. That's what makes it so much tougher - at home is where we're so bad.'
Juan Rivera had three singles and drove in a run off Ryan Vogelsong (10-7) to lift the Dodgers back to .500 with their 15th win in 18 games. Vogelsong gave up three runs in eight innings - including one on a balk - for his fifth straight loss.
For the first time this September, San Francisco started to show signs that it's already moving ahead to next year.
Bochy filled out his lineup with rookies and up-and-comers: Hector Sanchez made his first start at catcher, Brett Pill was at first, Brandon Belt played left field and Justin Christian was out in center.
The revamped lineup did nothing to ignite San Francisco's offense.
James Loney hit a one-out triple off Vogelsong in the second inning, and scored on Jerry Sands' groundout to give the Dodgers a 1-0 lead.
Matt Kemp lined a triple to right leading off the fourth. Rivera followed with an RBI single, the first of three straight infield hits for Los Angeles.
As if that wasn't enough to frustrate Vogelsong, he balked in a run with the bases loaded to extend the Dodgers' lead to 3-0. Vogelsong argued unsuccessfully with second base umpire Laz Diaz and paced the infield furiously over the call.
``Even though they weren't hitting the balls hard, they were finding holes. It happens,' Vogelsong said.
The right-hander rallied to get three straight outs and limit the damage. Of course, with San Francisco's scoring woes, that was more enough for the Dodgers.
The closest the Giants came to scoring was a dismal two-out rally in the fourth, when Pablo Sandoval singled and Brett Pill doubled down the line in left. With a chance to knock home two runs, Brandon Belt lined out to third.
``His two outings have been really good,' Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said of Eveland. ``He throws strikes and gets ahead of hitters. If he keeps pitching like that, it's tough to keep a guy out.'
Things would only get worse for the home team.
Carlos Beltran caught Jerry Sands' flyout in right field for the second out of the eighth and started jogging toward the dugout, apparently thinking it was the final out of the inning. Tony Gwynn Jr. easily went from second to third, and Giants fans booed Beltran - the prize acquisition at the trade deadline from the New York Mets - and several others left their seats.
Eveland was lifted for Jansen after he walked Hector Sanchez to open the bottom of the eighth. After pinch-hitter Mark DeRosa singled to put runners on first and third with no outs, the Giants again went out with a whimper.
Pinch-hitter Aubrey Huff and Jeff Keppinger struck out swinging, and Beltran groundout out to second to end the inning. All fans could do was boo.
NOTES: Giants C Buster Posey threw a light toss for the first time since he tore three ligaments in his left ankle and fractured a bone in his leg in a home-plate collision with Florida's Scott Cousins on May 25. He is on schedule to be ready by spring training. ... Giants LHP Barry Zito (ankle) will take fielding practice Sunday and is expected to be activated before the game. ... The Dodgers will send RHP Hiroki Kuroda (11-15) to the mound in the series finale Sunday against Giants LHP Madison Bumgarner (10-12).
The Associated Press News Service
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