(Sports Network) - The San Francisco Giants are probably glad to get out of the Bay Area with how poorly they have played lately and hope to bang around a former employee tonight in the opener of a three-game series against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.
San Francisco went 3-7 on its recent homestand and just dropped three of four meetings with the New York Mets at AT&T Park.
In a 9-1 loss on Thursday, Barry Zito had another rough outing and was reached for seven runs in 4 1/3 innings.
"My timing was off, so my command was erratic today," Zito said. "At times it was there, but at times the ball was up in the speed, and I wasn't commanding my offspeed like I usually do."
All-Star Game MVP Melky Cabrera was the lone offensive bright spot for the Giants and went 3-for-4 with a run scored. Hunter Pence was credited with the only RBI for San Francisco, which barely leads the NL West by one-half game over Los Angeles and two games in front of hard-charging Arizona.
The Giants have scored two runs over the last two games and also will pay a visit to St. Louis on the trek. They hope 2011 All-Star Ryan Vogelsong can play stopper when he gets the nod Friday at Coors Field.
Vogelsong has alternated wins and losses over his last six decisions and suffered a hard-luck loss in Sunday's 4-0 defeat at the hands of the rival Dodgers. Vogelsong yielded two runs -- one earned -- and six hits in six innings to fall to 8-5 in 19 starts. he still has a strong 2.22 ERA.
The right-hander hopes to stay unbeaten in his career against Colorado, as he owns a 4-0 mark in 10 lifetime appearances, five of which have been starts. Vogelsong threw seven innings of one-run ball against the Rockies in a 3-2 win back on May 14 at AT&T Park. He did not factor in the outcome of that one.
Colorado is aiming for its first winning streak in almost a month (July 8-13) and will resume a nine-game homestand tonight.
The Rockies ended a five-game slide and won for just the third time in 14 tries with Thursday's 8-2 win over the Cardinals in the finale of a three-game series. Josh Rutledge and Wilin Rosario each hit a home run, Jordan Pacheco was 3-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored and both Carlos Gonzalez and Tyler Colvin had two hits and a run scored.
Rutledge has hit homers in four straight games, a Colorado rookie record.
Alex White went 5 1/3 innings in the start and gave up two runs on five hits, while reliever Rex Brothers got the win for pitching 1 2/3 scoreless innings.
"I know our record is what it is, but when we pitch well the whole atmosphere changes," Colorado manager Jim Tracy said. "With that being said, White did a terrific job tonight and that was the key to our win here."
It's unknown as of now whether Tracy will be singing the praises of former Giants hurler Jonathan Sanchez, who will face his former club for the first time. Sanchez hasn't performed so well the last few seasons and already split time with Kansas City and Colorado this season. Before landing out west, Sanchez was 1-6 in 12 starts with the Royals. He has lost both of his starts with the Rockies.
Sanchez, a left-hander, hasn't tasted victory since his 2012 debut on April 8 against the LA Angels of Anaheim and is riding a personal five-game slide. He previously toed the rubber in Sunday's 7-2 loss versus Cincinnati and surrendered six runs in 4 1/3 innings. Sanchez has given up at least three runs in each of his past seven outings.
The Giants have taken three of five meetings with the Rockies this season and went 13-5 in this series a year ago.
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