By JEFF MEZYDLO
(AP) -- A lack of run support has prevented Anibal Sanchez from sporting a better record for the Miami Marlins. He has not needed much help from his teammates in order to achieve success against the San Francisco Giants.
San Francisco's Ryan Vogelsong knows a thing or two about receiving little support.
Sanchez hopes to avoid a third straight losing start while trying for a fourth consecutive win over the visiting Giants and Vogelsong on Thursday night.
Sanchez (2-2, 2.32 ERA) allowed two runs while lasting seven innings for a sixth straight start Saturday, but his Miami teammates managed three hits in a 2-0 loss at Cleveland. The Marlins (24-20) have scored 15 runs in the right-hander's eight outings.
"I never have complained about it," Sanchez said. "I need to keep working to keep the score close. I know (his teammates) want to do everything they can. That's baseball."
The Marlins have averaged 3.48 runs of support while Sanchez has gone 3-0 with an 0.87 ERA in four starts versus San Francisco. After giving up six hits and striking out 16 during consecutive shutouts against the Giants in 2010 and 2011, Sanchez allowed one run in seven innings of a 3-2 win at San Francisco on May 3.
That performance helped Miami complete a three-game sweep of the Giants (23-21). The teams combined for 13 runs in the set, with San Francisco scoring five.
Vogelsong (2-2, 2.27) allowed an earned run but walked four in seven innings of that May 3 defeat to Sanchez and the Marlins. He is 1-2 with a 1.59 ERA as a starter against Miami.
The right-hander has yielded three earned runs and overcome 13 walks in 28 1-3 innings to go 2-1 in his last four starts overall. Like Sanchez, however, Vogelsong ranks near the bottom of the majors receiving an average 2.54 runs of support.
After conceding only a soft single in seven innings of a 4-0 win over Oakland on Saturday, Vogelsong continues to build on last season when he went 13-7 with a 2.71 ERA.
"I think I need to do it for the whole season," Vogelsong said. "That's a big goal of mine for this season, to have another solid year and kind of put that beside me going forward. I still feel like I have a lot to prove."
He will try to help San Francisco bounce back from its second loss in seven games, 8-5 at Milwaukee on Wednesday.
"We just have to concentrate on playing better baseball on every pitch and let things go from there," Vogelsong told the Giants' official website.
Backup catcher Hector Sanchez had three RBIs, but is likely to be on the bench with Buster Posey back in the lineup after pinch-hitting Wednesday. Posey, who suffered a devastating season-ending ankle injury a year ago Friday, is 9 for his last 22 with two home runs and 10 RBIs.
However, he's 0 for 6 with three strikeouts versus Sanchez.
Jose Reyes had two hits with two RBIs on Wednesday as the Marlins had their three-game winning streak end with an 8-4 loss to Colorado. With a 16-6 record this month, Miami is one win away from setting the franchise record for victories in May.
Reyes is 7 for 18 (.389) in the last four games.
Updated May 24, 2012