SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Brandon Belt doubled in the go-ahead run in the bottom of the seventh inning in support of starter Jeff Samardzija, who threw seven strong innings in the San Francisco Giants’ 2-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday.
Pinch-hitter Miguel Gomez doubled to lead off the seventh for the Giants, who won their second straight and third of five. Denard Span sacrificed him to third and Belt drove a ball to left field that Starling Marte seemed to have trouble finding. It fell in front of him, allowing Gomez to score.
Adam Frazier drove in a run for the Pirates, who lost their fourth in five following a six-game winning streak.
Samardzija (5-11) allowed a run and four hits, striking out eight and walking two in winning for the first time since July 2. He had allowed 12 runs in his previous 10 1/3 innings.
Pirates starter Trevor Williams pitched well, allowing a run and five hits in six innings. He walked three and struck out two.
Tony Watson (5-3) pitched the seventh and took the loss.
Hunter Strickland pitched a spotless eighth and Sam Dyson worked the ninth for his sixth save.
Each pitcher worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the early going. Samardzija struck out Josh Bell to open the second and then allowed four consecutive baserunners, including Frazier’s double. He helped himself with a bare-handed grab of high hopper to record an out at the plate.
The Giants loaded the bases with one out in the first, with Brandon Crawford driving in a run on a groundout.
Pirates: OF Gregory Polanco (hamstring) is resuming baseball activities. He is hitting and playing catch and riding on a stationary bike. … Austin Meadows, the Pirates’ top prospect, has been hitting and throwing and is scheduled to resume playing games next week.
Giants: OF Carlos Moncrief had his contract purchased from Sacramento and will be used as a pinch-hitter and spot starter. … RHP Johnny Cueto (blister) threw 45 pitches in a bullpen session before the game. He’s scheduled to throw again Friday and if all goes well, will likely return to action. … RHP Mark Melancon (right pronater strain) threw 30 pitches before the game and will throw again in Los Angeles either another bullpen or to hitters. He could start a rehab assignment soon after.
Pirates: Chad Kuhl (3-7, 4.92 ERA) gets the call in Friday’s series opener at San Diego. He’s won his only start against the Padres.
Giants: LHP Matt Moore (3-10, 5.82 ERA) starts the series opener at the Los Angeles Dodgers on Friday. He’s 2-2 in four career starts at Dodger Stadium.
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