SAN FRANCISCO -- San Francisco Giants Manager Frank Robinson should be a happy man today after his team took three of four games from their arch-rivals -- the Los Angeles Dodgers -- over the weekend.
But he isn't.
Robinson is faced with the difficult task of holding together his pitching staff without the services of his two best hurlers -- Atlee Hammaker and Bill Lasky.
On Sunday, Robinson got a strong performance out of former reliever Renie Martin and a timely pitch-hit single by Bob Brenly as the Giants won the nightcap of a doubleheader, 8-6.
Los Angeles took the opener, 2-1, when rookie catcher Jack Fimple singled then scored on a error by Giants rookie catcher John Rabb.
'We've got some good pitching out of our other people and that's helped,' Robinson said of his injured staff. 'We're going to have to go without Hammaker and Lasky's status is indefinite. We'll just have to wait and see how he is.'
Hammaker, 10-5 with a 1.98 ERA, has been placed on the 21-day disabled list because of his sore shoulder.
In Sunday's opener, Robinson nearly came to blows with a number of Los Angeles players because of gestures the Giants manager supposedly made concerning Dodgers reliever Steve Howe's cocaine problems.
When Howe entered the game in the ninth inning, Robinson asked umpire Harry Wendelstedt to check the reliever's glove for foreign substances. While walking back to the dugout, Robinson says he innocently rubbed his nose.
That's not the way Dodger right fielder Derrel Thomas saw it. When the game ended, Thomas charged the Giants' dugout and had to be restrained by the umpires.
'You can get on a guy about having a bad arm or not throwing strikes but not personal stuff like that,' Thomas said. 'It wasn't a very smart thing for Robinson to do.'
Fimple opened the ninth inning of the opener with a single and Bill Russell was hit by a pitch from starter Fred Breining, 6-8. Minton relieved and, on Thomas' sacrifice bunt, third baseman Pettini bobbled the ball for an error to load the bases.
Sax grounded to Duane Kuiper at second base but Rabb pulled his foot off the plate as he took the throw home, allowing Fimple to score.
Tom Niedenfuer, 5-0, pitched two scoreless innings and Howe got his 11th save with a scoreless ninth.
In the nightcap, Brenly's two-run, bases-loaded single highlighted a five-run eighth inning that gave the Giants the victory.
Brenly said he was unhappy over his status as No. 3 catcher behind Milt May and Rabb, but would do what he could to contribute.
'I'm less than happy with the situation here,' he said. 'But I'll make the most of it and contribute when I can.'
Los Angeles Manager Tommy Lasorda said the second game loss was a blow to his team's playoff chances.
'We've got to start picking up ground,' Lasorda said of his team challenging the division-leading Atlanta Braves. 'It's getting late in the season. We got 15 hits in the second game and didn't win. You can't do that and contend.'
Jim Barr, 3-2, pitched 1 1-3 innings to pick up the win in the nightcap. Greg Minton relieved Barr to pick up his 11th save.
The Giants kept their jinx on Dodgers ace Fernando Valenzuela, 10-6, tagging him with the loss.