San Francisco Giants' Hunter Pence, second from right, celebrates with teammates after driving in Brandon Belt for the winning run against the San Diego Padres in San Francisco on  Monday. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

San Francisco Giants' Hunter Pence, second from right, celebrates with teammates after driving in Brandon Belt for the winning run against the San Diego Padres in San Francisco on Monday. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

Cueto goes the distance

AT&T PARK — As Johnny Cueto walked off the mound after throwing nine scoreless innings against the San Diego Padres, the right-hander pumped his fist and pointed to the sky.

All he needed was a run. Half an inning later, Hunter Pence providing that support, skying a popup to right field that somehow eluded the dive of Matt Kemp.

“To get Johnny a win after that effort, that’s what they were all happy about,” manager Bruce Bochy said after the San Francisco Giants edged past the San Diego Padres 1-0 on Monday night. “What a great game he threw.”

Cueto upped his record to 7-1 on the season after once again dismantling the Padres. The Dominican punched out six and allowed just two hits in his complete game — his third in as many starts against the Padres. In those three outings, Cueto has racked up 25 strikeouts while allowing just a single earned run.

When asked about his domination of the National League West’s fifth-place club, Cueto couldn’t help but let a big smile wash across his face.

“What can I tell you? They’re a major league team,” Cueto said via team translator Erwin Higueros. “I mean, they’re a good team. I just have to concentrate and make sure that I throw strikes and keep the ball down.”

With the win over San Diego, the Giants have won 11 of 12 and are now 16-6 in May, which is the best mark in the bigs. The crazy part is that the Giants have tallied all those wins even though the offense has been nowhere to be found.

The Giants have scored five runs or less in each of their past sixteen contests and have been particularly quiet when it matters most. During that stretch, the club is hitting .152 (16-for-105) with runners in scoring position.

No Giant has been epitomized the offensive stagnation that cleanup man Buster Posey who’s batting .182 (8-for-44) with runners in scoring position during the team-wide funk, and who’s mired in a 10-for-61 slide (.161).

“That’s fairly disconcerting that he’s only hitting about .170 this month and it’s gone like that,” Padres manager Andy Green said when informed of the Giants’ lofty May record and Posey’s struggles at the dish. “Every single guy on the field can impact a game every day. They’re solid baseball players.”

On Monday night, Pence was that guy — even though he wasn’t supposed to be playing in the game.

“I really wasn’t planning on using him to be honest,” Bochy said of the right fielder, who was left out of the starting lineup for a third day in a row as he deals with a mild right hamstring strain.

Before the game, not even Pence appeared to know if he’d be able to take part. When asked what exactly was wrong, Pence was at a loss.

“Umm. I can’t really [explain it],” Pence said. I mean, it’s like — what did they tell y’all?”

During batting practice, Pence appeared to have flunked his pregame test, taking just three hacks before exiting the cage. After Angel Pagan re-aggravated his left hamstring injury running to first base in the eighth, Pence was forced into the game.

“He was pretty adamant [that] he felt better [and] that he could give us some swings there,” Bochy said, explaining that his only other options were to use backup catcher Trevor Brown or starter Madison Bumgarner. “So, we put him up there. It was a perfect situation.”Bruce BochyJohnny Cuetokarl buscheckMLBSan Diego PadresSan Francisco Giants

Just Posted

On Sunday, California bore the brunt of what meteorologists referred to as a bomb cyclone and an atmospheric river, a convergence of storms that brought more than half a foot of rain to parts of the Bay Area, along with high winds, concerns about flash floods and the potential for heavy snow in the Sierra Nevada. Much of the Bay Area was under a flash flood watch on Sunday, with the National Weather Service warning of the potential for mudslides across the region. (NOAA via The New York Times)
Bomb cyclone, atmospheric river combine to pummel California with rain and wind

What you need to know about this historic weather event

National Weather Service flood watch in the San Francisco Bay Area for Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021. (National Weather Service via Bay City News)
Storm pounds Bay Area, leaving over 145,000 without power: Closures and updates

Torrential rainfall causes flooding, triggers evacuations in burn areas

Plan Bay Area 2050 is an expansive plan guiding the region’s growth and development over the next three decades. The regional plan addresses progressive policy priorities like a universal basic income and a region-wide rent cap, alongside massive new spending on affordable housing and transportation infrastructure. (Shutterstock)
Plan Bay Area 2050: Analyzing an extensive regional plan that covers the next 30 years

Here are the big ticket proposals in the $1.4 trillion proposal

A collaborative workspace for a decentralized autonomous organization (DAO) in Coordinape is pictured at a recent blockchain meet up at Atlas Cafe. <ins>(Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)</ins>
Business without bosses: San Francisco innovators battle bureaucracy with blockchain

‘The next generation will work for three DAOs at the same time’

Most Read