The San Francisco Giants appeared to be on a mission to demolish Arizona Diamondbacks lefty Wade Miley before he really got comfortable Tuesday night at Chase Field in Phoenix.
As it turns out, the Giants (1-1) didn’t quite finish the job. After hammering out four runs on four hits in the top of the first, including Brandon Belt’s second homer in as many nights, San Francisco mustered just three hits the rest of the way and lost to the Diamondbacks (1-3), 5-4.
After the rough start, Miley (1-1) settled down, allowing just two hits over his final six innings of work.
Matt Cain, meanwhile, was decent in his first start of the season after a rough first inning of his own.
But Arizona eventually fought back, taking the lead in the sixth against reliever J.C. Gutierrez—who made the club in spring training as a non-roster invitee. Chris Owings singled with one out and stole second before A.J. Pollock cracked a ground-rule double to left center to tie the game 4-4.
Gutierrez (0-1) then surrendered a single to Miley and Gerardo Parra knocked in Pollock with a sacrifice fly to left field.
The Giants had a chance to tie or take the lead in the top of the seventh when Belt—who is a sizzling 5-for-9 with two homers to start the season—led off with a single off Miley and Brandon Crawford smacked a one-out double to right-center to put the tying run at third and the go-ahead run at second.
The new replay system played a big role in Arizona’s fourth-inning run.
With two outs in the fourth, Cain threw over to Belt in an attempt to pick off Pollock, who had singled. Pollock was called safe and manager Bruce Bochy used his replay challenge to appeal the call.
The safe call was upheld, leaving Bochy without options just moments later. Parra doubled to right to advance Pollock to third and with Aaron Hill at the plate, a changeup from Cain got away from catcher Buster Posey and Pollock broke for the plate.
Posey delivered the ball to Cain, who appeared to tag Pollock out. But the runner was called safe and Bochy, with his challenge already exhausted, could do nothing but resort to the old-school tactic of charging out of the dugout and screaming about the call for a bit.
The Giants made one last charge in the top of the ninth, with Hector Sanchez, pinch-hitting for Joaquin Arias, powering a one-out double to left. Ehire Adrianza entered as a pinch-runner, but Addison Reed—who had surrendered a game-winning homer to Posey on Monday night—induced a popup right up the chute at the plate by Crawford and froze Perez for a called third strike to earn his first save as a Diamondback. Reed saved 40 games for the White Sox last year.
The Giants four-run first began when Pagan led off with a single to left. One out later, Pablo Sandoval singled up the middle and Posey drove in the first run with a line single to left. After a strikeout by Michael Morse, Miley threw a wild pitch that moved the runners to second and third.
No matter … Belt hit a towering shot to right-center that scored everyone.
Cain worked five innings, allowing three runs—two earned—on seven hits and two walks with two strikeouts, throwing 99 pitches. Gutierrez allowed two runs on four hits with a walk and a strikeout in his two innings and Santiago Casilla fanned one in a scoreless eighth.
Belt had two of the Giants’ seven hits.
The Giants and Diamondbacks meet for the third game of the four-game series on Wednesday at 6:40 p.m. Pacific at Chase Field, with Tim Hudson scheduled to make his Giants’ debut against right-hander Trevor Cahill (0-1, 11.25 ERA).