San Francisco (73-49) at Montreal (64-60)

  • Game info: 1:05 pm EDT Mon Aug 18, 2003
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Javier Vazquez has already matched his win total from last season.

He’ll look to eclipse it as the Montreal Expos try to complete their first-ever season sweep of the San Francisco Giants in the finale of a four-game series at Olympic Stadium.

Vazquez, who went 10-13 last season, has pitched well in recent outings. Over his last three starts, the 27-year-old right-hander is 2-1 with a 2.57 ERA.

In a 6-5 win over the Colorado Rockies on Wednesday, Vazquez gave up five runs—three earned—and six hits in six-plus innings. He also recovered well after an electrical failure delayed the game for 1 hour, 16 minutes.

“Javy pitched well, especially after coming off that delay,” Expos catcher Brian Schneider said. “It’s not very easy to do that. He held them down and gave us a chance to win.”

Vazquez will look to deliver another strong outing as the Expos try to sweep the four-game set. They also won three straight at Pacific Bell Park from May 12-14.

On Sunday, Brad Wilkerson hit a game-ending grand slam to lift Montreal to a 4-2 win. He was mobbed by his teammates at home plate and brought out of the dugout for a curtain call by the Olympic Stadium crowd of 17,655.

“I knew I put a charge into it,” Wilkerson said. “It felt really good to drive in the game-winning run. It was a big, big win for us.”

Montreal has won four straight and six of eight.

The Giants, who have lost a season-high five straight, continue to struggle without Barry Bonds. The five-time MVP left the team Thursday to be with his father, Bobby, who is ill with lung cancer and numerous other ailments.

Bonds is expected to rejoin the Giants on Tuesday when they host the Atlanta Braves at Pac Bell.

STANDINGS: Giants - 1st place, NL West. Expos - 4th place, 16 1/2 GB, NL East.

GIANTS PROBABLE STARTER: Dustin Hermanson (2-2, 4.79 ERA). Hermanson, who began the season with St. Louis, is 1-0 with a 3.09 ERA in two starts for the Giants. He worked 5 2-3 innings on Aug. 9, giving up two runs and four hits, but did not get a decision in San Francisco’s 8-6 loss to Philadelphia. In two career games against the Expos, Hermanson has no record and a 27.00 ERA.

EXPOS PROBABLE STARTER: Vazquez (10-8, 3.62 ERA). In 10 career games against the Giants, Vazquez is 3-5 with a 4.27 ERA.

OFFENSIVE LEADERS: Giants - Bonds, .341 avg., 37 HRs, 77 RBIs and 88 runs; Marquis Grissom, 9 SBs. Expos - Jose Vidro, .324 avg.; Orlando Cabrera, 17 HRs, 67 RBIs, 80 runs and 20 SBs.

SEASON SERIES: Expos, 6-0.

STREAKS AND NOTES: Giants - 1B J.T. Snow is batting .300 (6-for-20) in his career against RHP Vazquez. … The Giants are 60-16 when scoring at least four runs. … San Francisco has been outscored 26-10 during its five-game losing streak. Expos - RF Vladimir Guerrero needs one homer to tie Andre Dawson for the all-time franchise lead with 225. … 2B Vidro is batting .378 (14-for-37) during a 10-game hitting streak. … Montreal’s starting pitchers are batting .268 (11-for-41) since July 24.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Giants - 32-31 on the road; Expos - 41-23 at home.

INJURIES: Giants - C Alberto Castillo (wrist), 15-day DL; SS Rich Aurilia (appendicitis), 15-day DL; 2B Ray Durham (leg), 15-day DL; OF Marvin Benard (knee), 15-day DL; RHP Robb Nen (shoulder), 15-day DL; RHP Felix Rodriguez (abdominal muscle), 15-day DL; LHP Kirk Rueter (shoulder), 15-day DL. Expos - C Michael Barrett (hip and finger), 15-day DL; 3B Fernando Tatis (chest), 15-day DL; RHP Orlando Hernandez (shoulder), 15-day DL; RHP Dan Smith (shoulder), 15-day DL; LHP Scott Stewart (appendicitis), 15-day DL; RHP Claudio Vargas (rotator cuff), 15-day DL; RHP Tony Armas Jr. (shoulder), 60-day DL.

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Starting Pitchers

D. Hermanson CIN vs. J. Vazquez MIA
3-3 Record 13-12
4.06 ERA 3.24
39 K 241
24 BB 57
1.37 WHIP 1.11