ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Anthony DeSclafani and the San Francisco Giants aren't showing any signs of slowing down.
The right-hander allowed three hits over seven sharp innings Tuesday night in a 5-0 victory against the Los Angeles Angels. The surprising NL West leaders have won seven of eight and are a season-high 21 games over .500 with the best record in the majors at 47-26 and a three-game lead over the Dodgers.
“It is definitely fun to be a part of it. I feel like everyone is contributing,” said DeSclafani, who struck out nine in winning his fourth straight start. “No one is trying to get too big. Everyone is staying in their approach and things are taking care of themselves.”
DeSclafani (8-2) did not permit a hit after the second inning and retired 18 of the last 19 batters he faced.
Since giving up 10 earned runs against the Dodgers on May 23, DeSclafani has allowed only six runs (five earned) in his last five starts for a 1.42 ERA while holding opposing hitters to a .171 batting average (19 for 111).
“I feel like he has been the same pitcher all year long. He has been real good with the fastball and excellent with the slider,” Giants manager Gabe Kapler said. “He has been fearless and attacking the strike zone.”
Wilmer Flores provided some of the early offensive support with a home run during a four-run first inning.
Flores, who homered twice in Sunday's win over Philadelphia, extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a two-run shot off Andrew Heaney (4-5) to make it 4-0. Four of Flores' seven home runs have come during his hitting streak.
Mauricio Dubón also went deep and Brandon Crawford had three hits for San Francisco.
The Giants struck early, with all their runs coming in the first two innings. After Buster Posey's grounder scored Mike Yastrzemski, Brandon Belt drove in Darin Ruf with a perfect bunt down the third-base line that stayed fair to make it 2-0.
“That was the most important play all year. It was perfect timing and a creative way over a left-hander to keep them on the ropes,” Kapler said.
Dubón led off the second with a drive that just cleared the wall in right-center for his fifth homer of the season.
Heaney went six innings and allowed five runs on 10 hits while tying a season high in strikeouts with 10.
Los Angeles' best chance to get to DeSclafani came in the second inning when Max Stassi led off with a single and advanced to third on José Iglesias' double. But Luis Rengifo and David Fletcher were retired on fly balls to the outfield not deep enough to advance the runners, and Justin Upton struck out to end the inning.
“If you don’t get to him early, he is going to settle in. We had opportunities early and nothing happened. If we did it would have been a different game,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said.
Upton left the game due to lower back tightness after striking out in the second inning. Maddon said the team should know more before Wednesday's game.
If Upton is unable to play, that could mean Shohei Ohtani might not hit, as he is scheduled to take the mound. Ohtani has hit in seven of his 10 pitching starts this season, but Maddon might not want to do that if he has a short bench.
If Ohtani is in the lineup, it would mark the first time in a major league game that the NL team uses a designated hitter and the AL team does not, since the interleague game is being played in an AL park.
Giants: RHP Logan Webb (right shoulder strain) threw a bullpen Monday. Kapler said it went well but did not indicate when the next one is scheduled. ... INF Tommy La Stella (left hamstring strain) went 0 for 3 for Triple-A Sacramento in the first game of his rehab assignment. La Stella is on the 60-day injured list and isn't eligible to come off until July 4.
Angels: LHP José Quintana pitched a scoreless seventh inning in his first game since being activated Monday. The left-hander went on the IL due to left shoulder inflammation, but lost his spot in the rotation due to a 1-3 record and the continued improvement shown by Patrick Sandoval with wins in his last two outings.
San Francisco RHP Kevin Gausman opposes Ohtani in what might be the day's best pitching matchup. Gausman (8-1) is second in the majors with a 1.51 ERA and tied for fourth in wins. Ohtani (3-1, 2.70 ERA) has 50 strikeouts in his last seven starts.
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