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Bonds goes deep, but Cain struggles

Bonds goes deep, but Cain struggles

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants' 4-1 loss to the Mets on Tuesday was a tale of two Cains and too many doubles that not even a home run from Barry Bonds could erase.

Giants starting pitcher Matt Cain got off to a rocky start by giving up three consecutive doubles to open the first inning before settling down to retire the next three batters.

"He showed something in the first inning," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "He got hit pretty good but regrouped."

Cain showed flashes of the pitcher who flirts with no-hitters when he retired three straight in the seventh inning with his pitch count hovering near 100. He also showed flashes of the pitcher who gave up seven runs in three innings during his last outing during his rocky first inning.

"You don't want to give a pitch when you're ahead in the count," Cain said. "That's what I did a couple of times in the first inning."

Cain stayed ahead in the count for most of the game and threw plenty of first-pitch strikes. Eight of the 10 hits Cain gave up came off the first pitch.

After giving up four runs in the first two innings, Cain cruised through three shutout innings in 11 batters before struggling again in the sixth, allowing four baserunners but no runs. He emerged from the game having allowed four runs on 10 hits in seven innings.

Bonds kept the Mets from shutting out the Giants when he whacked a solo shot estimated at 422 feet off the first pitch Tom Glavine served him in the fourth inning.

It was Bonds' 11th home run of the season and the 745th of his illustrious career, bringing him within 10 homers of tying Hank Aaron's all-time record.

"I wish we could have had more guys on, but [Bonds is] swinging the bat great, and somebody's going to run into it," Cain said.

Unfortunately for the Giants, they didn't have many runners on all night, logging just seven total baserunners, none of whom reached second. Glavine's performance was a big part of that. He threw seven innings, struck out five and gave up the homer to Bonds.

Bonds' homer produced the Giants' only run of the game, not giving Cain much to work with, but the young righty was more unhappy with his first-inning performance than the lack of offensive support.

Cain asked: "You're never going to be happy giving up double after double after double, are you?"

Cain wasn't thrilled with his performance, but he gave the Giants seven innings they could have won with.

"We needed the innings out of him," Bochy said. "Plus, he kept us in the game there we just couldn't get much going offensively."

Collectively, the Giants didn't do well offensively, but Randy Winn extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a single in the third inning. Ray Durham also contributed a line-drive single and has now hit safely in a team-high 28 of 32 games.

Releiver Kevin Correia gave the Giants two shutout innings while facing the minimum.

Becky Regan is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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