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SF@MIL: Vogelsong throws seven solid frames

The last two National League West champions will meet for the first time in 2013 on Monday when the D-backs travel to San Francisco to meet up with the Giants.

Following an 8-4 start to the season, the D-backs have struggled a bit through their first two stops on their three-city road trip, dropping consecutive series to the Yankees and Rockies. On the flipside, the Giants got just what the doctor ordered when they took three straight over the Padres this weekend after getting swept in Milwaukee.

The good news for Arizona entering Monday is it will send Wade Miley to the mound. The lefty has been the club's most reliable starting pitcher this season. In three outings, Miley has given up just six runs in 19 1/3 innings, good enough for a 2.79 ERA.

In his last outing, Miley took a shutout into the seventh inning against the Yankees in New York, but ended up taking a hard-luck loss after he allowed three runs, including one that he walked in.

"They did a good job getting guys on in that seventh inning," Miley said after the game. "I think I got two pretty quick outs, and then it just came unraveled. They did a good job seeing pitches, not getting overaggressive and I just kind of handed it to them."

Hoping to lead the Giants to their fourth consecutive win will be right-hander Ryan Vogelsong, who has improved each time out this season, allowing five, four and three runs, respectively, in his three starts.

"I felt better -- still not perfect, but today was definitely better," Vogelsong said after his last start in Milwaukee. "You always want to stay in there as long as you can."

Giants: Sandoval back in the lineup
Pablo Sandoval was OK and in the lineup Sunday after being removed from the game Saturday when he fouled a pitch off his right ankle in the seventh inning against the Padres.

Sandoval leads the team with 18 RBIs and provided all the offense the Giants needed on Saturday, knocking his fourth homer of the season in the fourth inning.

"He's fine," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "He's playing. I'm sure it's a little sore. He's good to go. That's why he's out there."

D-backs: Club easing Gregorius into role
Didi Gregorius has collected six hits, including two homers, in his first three games with the D-backs after starting the season on the disabled list.

The 23-year-old Gregorius, the D-backs' No. 3 prospect, made his big league debut last September with the Reds, hitting .300 (6-for-20) in eight games before a December trade brought him to Arizona. He suffered a strained right elbow in Spring Training and manager Kirk Gibson has been sensitive in how he's used him since activating him last Saturday. Both Gibson and bench coach Alan Trammell after Gibson's Saturday ejection, chose not to use him off the bench with the game on the line.

"With Gregorius coming back like he did, we are somewhat cautious about [playing him] three consecutive days, at this point," Gibson said. "He was available, but sometimes guys are available, but you try to stay away from them."

Gregorius was vital to the D-backs win on Sunday, homering and starting a two-run, ninth-inning rally with a leadoff single.

Worth noting
• The D-backs' bullpen has held opponents to just five runs over 32 innings in their past 12 games.

• Brandon Crawford and Hunter Pence are the only two Giants players to start all 19 games so far this season. Comments