SAN FRANCISCO -- Ryan Vogelsong's turn in the rotation comes back around next Wednesday at Toronto. Giants manager Bruce Bochy said today Vogelsong will definitely make that start.
Vogelsong failed to make it out of the fifth inning for the second consecutive start last night in the Giants' 6-3 loss to the Braves and has a 7.78 ERA through his first seven starts. He has also allowed nine home runs in 39 1/3 innings after giving up 17 all of last season.
"I think with him it's stay behind him, let's keep getting after it," Bochy said. "He went through this last year. He had a tough rut he had to deal with, and he'll come out of this. I think he's real close."
Vogelsong had a month-long slump from mid-August to mid-September last year before figuring things out in time for the playoffs. During that stretch he allowed 34 earned runs in seven starts -- the same total he has given up through seven starts this year.
Bochy said he thinks Vogelsong may be putting too much pressure on himself from pitch to pitch in his starts.
"He just has to back off a little bit," Bochy said. "He's pressing, grinding I think a little too hard every pitch. Which you want to do -- every pitch is important -- but he probably needs to just back off a little bit."
That's probably easier said than done for Vogelsong, who is famously intense on days he takes the mound. Bochy was also asked whether Vogelsong might be throwing too much between starts trying to figure things out. He acknowledged it's possible.
"That's a hard one to answer because it's hard to say exactly how much throwing he's been doing on the side, by himself I'm talking about," Bochy said. "Sometimes pitchers do do that, I agree, just like hitters. They're trying to get out of a slump, they're taking 1,000 swings a day, now you compound the problem.
"That's the whole gist of what I'm talking about, backing off. Not just in the game, but with all the extra work. Let's keep it simple and have some fun out here."
* Bochy said having Andres Torres in left against a right-hander rather than Gregor Blanco is a product of wanting to get Torres a start. Torres' last start was May 6 and he has had just three in May. He's also having a good homestand -- 5-for-12 -- and Bochy agreed Torres has been "throwing out some good at-bats." Torres will likely get another start tomorrow against left-hander Paul Maholm.
* Santiago Casilla is off-limits again tonight with right knee discomfort. But Bochy said he's hopeful Casilla could be available as soon as tomorrow. The right-hander is due to get a new knee brace tomorrow that he hopes "will make it a lot more comfortable for him to throw," Bochy said.
* The bullpen has been putting in a lot of work recently, including 4 2/3 innings Thursday in relief of Vogelsong, but Bochy said everybody is available tonight for at least an inning if needed.
-- Matt Kawahara