Mijares making contributions

Wednesday, Aug. 22

LOS ANGELES — Jose Mijares could be this year’s Javier Lopez.

Just ask the real Javier Lopez.

The Giants acquired Lopez on Trade Deadline day two years ago. He recorded a 1.42 ERA in 27 appearances for the Giants through the rest of the season to help them win the National League West. In the postseason, he allowed just one earned run in 5 2/3 innings spanning nine appearances as the Giants won the World Series.

Mijares’ statistics (1-0, 4.26 ERA) aren’t as dazzling as Lopez’s were. But that’s deceiving, because Mijares coughed up all three runs and four of the six hits he has allowed as a Giant last Sunday at San Diego. Usually, he has been as effective as he was Tuesday night, when he relieved Tim Lincecum and stranded runners on the corners by striking out Andre Ethier with a 93-mph fastball.

Welcome to the Giants-Dodgers rivalry, Jose.

“We don’t have time to ease him into these situations,” Lopez said. “From here on out, these are all must-win games, especially when you’re playing divisional rivals.”

Among the Giants’ left-handed relief contingent, Mijares complements Lopez, who relies more on sinkers, and Jeremy Affeldt, who throws just as hard yet mixes in curveballs to upset hitters’ timing.

“He has a little more under the hood than I do. That’s why he was able to run that fastball up there,” Lopez said. “He’s got a pretty good arm.”

Chris Haft

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