Bumgarner's strong start goes unsupported

Bumgarner's strong start goes unsupported

SAN FRANCISCO -- Giants ace Madison Bumgarner has been excellent this season, but he can't do it all on his own. Despite his eight innings with two runs allowed, it was still enough to be overcome by the Reds, who left town with a 2-1 victory and two of three games in the series. San Francisco has lost nine of 11 games since the All-Star break.

Bumgarner, who is 10-6 with a 2.09 ERA this season, allowed five hits with no walks and nine strikeouts. He has a 1-2 record and 2.00 ERA in his past five starts, but has received a total of 10 runs in support during that span. It was a 1-1 game when red-hot Jay Bruce slugged a leadoff home run to right field to put the Reds ahead.

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Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants won't rush Pence back from rehab

Giants won't rush Pence back from rehab

SAN FRANCISCO -- According to the stat sheet, it would seem Hunter Pence is right at the doorstep of a return to the San Francisco Giants. In five rehab games with Triple-A Sacramento, Pence is 8-for-16 with two home runs and four RBIs.

But manager Bruce Bochy said Wednesday that the right fielder's output at the plate will have no effect on when the club chooses to activate him.

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Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

First-place Giants, Nats clash at AT&T Park

First-place Giants, Nats clash at AT&T Park

The Nationals and Giants begin a four-game series Thursday at AT&T Park in a matchup of two first-place teams that have struggled a bit since the All-Star break.

Washington, which is 5-6 since the All-Star break, is in the midst of a three-city, nine-game road trip and salvaged a split in a two-game series with Cleveland. Right-hander Tanner Roark will take the mound trying to bounce back after allowing five runs in five innings his last time out.

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Jamal Collier covers the Nationals for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants hold off Reds after Cain's homer

Giants hold off Reds after Cain's homer

SAN FRANCISCO -- In one month, the Giants have seen their formidable National League West lead shrink to a less comfortable cushion. Losing eight of nine games entering Tuesday certainly didn't help and made holding on to a 9-7 victory over the Reds all the more necessary. Their lead over the second-place Dodgers, which was seven games on June 24, remained at 2 1/2 games.

Matt Cain gave the Giants a 4-0 lead with a booming three-run home run in the bottom of the second inning against struggling rookie lefty Cody Reed. It became a five-run lead in the third after three hits led to Grant Green's RBI groundout that scored Mac Williamson. However, Cain could not provide a quality start in his second game back from the disabled list. He gave up four runs and six hits over 5 1/3 innings with one walk, four strikeouts and two home runs.

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Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cain provides own backing with 3-run homer

Cain provides own backing with 3-run homer

SAN FRANCISCO -- In need of an offensive spark, the Giants got it from an unlikely source Tuesday night: Matt Cain.

In his first appearance at AT&T Park since June 13, Cain came to the plate in the second inning with runners on first and third and one out, and slugged a three-run homer to give the Giants a four-run lead in what would become a 9-7 win over the Reds on Tuesday night.

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Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants claim second-longest sellout streak

Team moves past Indians for regular-season record, trails Red Sox

Giants claim second-longest sellout streak

SAN FRANCISCO -- With a paid attendance of 41,896 Tuesday night, the Giants surpassed the Cleveland Indians for the second-longest sellout streak in Major League Baseball history. Dating back to Oct. 1, 2010, the club has sold out 456 consecutive regular-season games at AT&T Park.

It is the longest active streak in the Majors.

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Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Belt benefits from lineup drop, return to basics

Belt benefits from lineup drop, return to basics

SAN FRANCISCO -- The way Brandon Belt saw it, a lot of the blame for the Giants' struggles to open the second half of the season could rest on his shoulders. Belt hit 2-for-33 with 17 strikeouts during their recent eight-game road trip and got away from what helped him get voted into his first All-Star Game.

"I was too anxious," Belt said. "Swinging before I saw what kind of pitch it was and where it was going."

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Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Belt, Pagan homer but Giants outslugged by Reds

Belt, Pagan homer but Giants outslugged by Reds

SAN FRANCISCO -- With its spacious dimensions, AT&T Park will never be mistaken for Cincinnati's cozier and homer-abundant Great American Ball Park. But it certainly felt like its Midwest counterpart Monday as the teams combined for five home runs. It was Jay Bruce's two homers, however, that propelled the Reds to a 7-5 victory over the Giants.

"We didn't have those prevailing winds and the mist and all that other stuff that make it difficult to hit a ball out of a ballpark," Reds manager Bryan Price said. "It seemed to play pretty fair tonight."

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Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Big flies a big flaw for Giants pitching

Big flies a big flaw for Giants pitching

SAN FRANCISCO -- For a team that doesn't rely on power offensively, the home run ball has increasingly mocked the Giants during the month of July. The latest example came Monday at normally pitcher-friendly AT&T Park, as the Cincinnati Reds used three two-run homers off Jake Peavy to defeat San Francisco, 7-5, and hand the club its eighth loss since the All-Star break.

The home run theme has been present in almost every one of those defeats. In total, the pitching staff has yielded 19 home runs in its last nine outings, with Peavy allowing five of them. His appearance mirrored Jeff Samardzija's on Sunday, when the right-hander yielded two home runs for the second consecutive start.

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Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants could get Panik, Pence back soon

Giants could get Panik, Pence back soon

SAN FRANCISCO -- Giants manager Bruce Bochy admitted the All-Star break might have thrown his club into a bit of a "funk." The Giants entered that period with the best record in the Majors, but returned to AT&T Park on Monday following a 1-7 road trip that saw their division lead over the Dodgers shrink to three games.

"I don't think anybody saw that coming," Bochy said before the Giants began a seven-game homestand with a matchup against the Cincinnati Reds.

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Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Duggar on MLB Pipeline's Prospect Team of the Week

Duggar on MLB Pipeline's Prospect Team of the Week

MLBPipeline.com's Prospect Team of the Week honors the best performances from the previous seven days. Any player currently on an organization Top 30 Prospects list on our Prospect Watch is eligible, including big leaguers.

The latest edition of MLBPipeline.com's Prospect Team of the Week (July 18-24) is led by a trio of Diazes in Isan Diaz, Yandy Diaz and Lewin Diaz, each of whom had a big week.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants can't wrap forgettable trip on high note

Giants can't wrap forgettable trip on high note

NEW YORK -- As if the Giants were being mocked by irony or coincidence, the double play that halted their eighth-inning rally in Sunday's 5-2 loss to the Yankees was scored 4-1-5.

That's San Francisco's area code, of course.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Samardzija chased in 6th, late rally falls short

Samardzija chased in 6th, late rally falls short

NEW YORK -- Carlos Beltran and Mark Teixeira homered as Nathan Eovaldi threw a season-high 118 pitches, leading the Yankees to a 5-2 victory over the Giants on Sunday as they prepared to take their swirling trade speculation on the road.

Amid reports that the Yankees are listening to offers on closer Aroldis Chapman, they were able to complete a 6-4 homestand without calling upon the three big arms of Chapman, Dellin Betances and Andrew Miller, all of whom were unavailable. Eovaldi gave them the lengthy outing they needed, going 6 2/3 innings and credited his cutter to his performance.

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Bryan Hoch has covered the Yankees for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @bryanhoch, on Facebook and read his MLBlog, Bombers Beat.

Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants continue to monitor relief market

Giants continue to monitor relief market

NEW YORK -- With slightly more than a week left before the Aug. 1 non-waiver Trade Deadline strikes, the Giants remain active in their efforts to secure a reliever who could add experience as well as competence to their bullpen.

Just don't expect the Giants to obtain the biggest prize: Yankees closer Aroldis Chapman.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blach among top prospect performers Sunday

Nationals' No. 5 prospect hurls his first shutout following big league debt

Blach among top prospect performers Sunday

Reynaldo Lopez is eager to get back to the big leagues.

In his first start since debuting with the Nationals on July 19, Lopez recorded his first shutout on Sunday as Triple-A Syracuse defeated Rochester, 6-0. The Nationals' No. 5 prospect scattered four hits and struck out seven in nine dominant innings, throwing 69 of his 99 pitches for strikes.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rookie's 12th-inning hit snaps Giants' skid

Rookie's 12th-inning hit snaps Giants' skid

NEW YORK -- Presented with a second chance to give the San Francisco Giants an extra-inning lead Saturday, Mac Williamson treated it like a pitch down the middle. He wouldn't let it pass him by.

Williamson drove in both Giants runs, including the go-ahead tally with a 12th-inning single that hastened San Francisco's 2-1 victory over the New York Yankees. The decision ended the Giants' season-high, six game losing streak and kept them four games ahead of second-place Los Angeles in the National League West.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.

Nick Suss is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Williamson gets redemption with two big hits

Williamson gets redemption with two big hits

NEW YORK -- Success often cannot be rushed, as Mac Williamson was reminded Saturday during the Giants' 2-1, 12-inning Interleague victory over the New York Yankees.

Playing right field, Williamson charged Mark Teixeira's fourth-inning single too hard and overran the ball for an error. That enabled Didi Gregorius to score the afternoon's first run -- which seemed like 10 runs, given the Giants' .239 batting average during their six-game losing streak.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Posey's bruised foot doesn't keep him out

Posey's bruised foot doesn't keep him out

NEW YORK -- Giants catcher Buster Posey dispelled any fears about his bruised right ankle by starting Saturday's game against the New York Yankees, less than 24 hours after sustaining his injury.

"He got up this morning and said it felt pretty good," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "It loosened up and he felt good to go."

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants drop 6th straight after 8th-inning error

Giants drop 6th straight after 8th-inning error

NEW YORK -- The Giants' struggles and the Yankees' surge both continued Friday night as San Francisco shortstop Brandon Crawford committed an eighth-inning throwing error that helped New York generate the tiebreaking run in a 3-2 victory. It was San Francisco's season-high sixth consecutive loss.

"Unfortunately, the first half we couldn't be consistent as a team," Yankees right fielder Carlos Beltran said after his team won its seventh of their last 10 games and is now 4 1/2 games out of the top spot in the American League Wild Card race. "Now, we feel like we're playing better baseball, so we're happy where we're at. We just need to continue to put up wins and we'll see what happens."

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.

Nick Suss is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Williamson again comes through in pinch

Williamson again comes through in pinch

NEW YORK -- Mac Williamson somehow has become inoculated from the illness that ails the Giants' hitters, particularly in critical situations.

Williamson lined a pinch-hit double in Friday night's eighth inning off Yankees left-hander Andrew Miller, one of the relievers the Giants reportedly covet. It forged a temporary tie as San Francisco proceeded to tumble to its sixth consecutive defeat, 3-2.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Duffy steps up running; Panik takes break

Duffy steps up running; Panik takes break

NEW YORK -- The Giants continue to feel encouraged by the progress of third baseman Matt Duffy, who could begin a Minor League injury rehabilitation stint within a week, manager Bruce Bochy said Friday.

Recovering from a left Achilles injury, Duffy is running more frequently and freely. Currently working out at the Giants' training facility in Scottsdale, Ariz., Duffy hasn't played since June 19.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Sabean discusses need for relief help

Giants may look to make moves before Trade Deadline

Sabean discusses need for relief help

NEW YORK -- Giants executive vice president of baseball operations Brian Sabean affirmed that the team is striving to acquire a reliever by the Aug. 1 non-waiver Trade Deadline who will upgrade the bullpen significantly, not just incrementally.

"I don't know how things are going to shake out," Sabean said.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Offense shows life with seven-run rally

Offense shows life with seven-run rally

BOSTON -- The Giants felt free to regard Wednesday's 11-7 Interleague loss to the Boston Red Sox as a moral victory, though nobody has yet developed a column for that kind of game in the standings.

Given their woes since the All-Star break, performing competitively and interrupting their offensive funk had to encourage the Giants, though they matched a season high as their losing streak lengthened to five games.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Losing streak hits five games

Losing streak hits five games

BOSTON -- Fenway Park was the place to be Wednesday night, with the Red Sox and Giants engaging in a classic slugfest while wearing throwback uniforms and fans of both teams trying to shout each other down.

Ultimately, all that mattered was whose bat spoke the loudest, and that man was Hanley Ramirez, who belted three homers and collected six RBIs as the Red Sox prevailed, 11-7, and crept into the American League East lead by a half-game.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.

Deesha Thosar is a reporter for MLB.com based in Boston.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Giants taking conservative approach with Pence

Giants taking conservative approach with Pence

BOSTON -- The Giants remained ultra-careful Wednesday in prescribing Hunter Pence's activity during his injury rehabilitation stint, ordering the right fielder to limit his workload to pregame drills.

Pence, who's striving to overcome a right hamstring injury, has appeared in one of a possible four games with Triple-A Sacramento. Giants manager Bruce Bochy said that Pence still felt sore from being hit by a pitch in his initial game last Saturday.

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Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.