Giants Can’t Overcome Nieves’ Grand Slam In 6-4 Loss

In a series where the Giants scored three runs over their last three games, putting four up in one day seems like a big feat. It wasn’t enough, however, as the offense couldn’t come back from a Wil Nieves grand slam and San Francisco dropped their third straight game to the San Diego Padres, this time 6-4 on Sunday afternoon.

The Giants went ahead early, putting one up on the board in the second inning, as Matt Duffy knocked in Justin Maxwell with a single to Matt Kemp. Maxwell just beat the throw home, and has batted .273 in his first week of the season.

Brandon Belt scored another run for San Francisco with another RBI single out to right field, this time scoring Nori Aoki. Buster Posey, taking a walk before Belt’s at-bat, was able to advance to third on the sharp hit to Kemp. Belt returned to the lineup for the first time since leaving the game with a strained groin against the Diamondbacks on Tuesday night. The first baseman went 1-for-4 with three strikeouts.

Jake Peavy threw four innings on Sunday afternoon, and while he was able to hold San Diego scoreless through three, things escalated in the fourth. After a Matt Kemp single and a Justin Upton walk, Peavy was able to get one out, but the loaded the bases with another single, this time to Will Middlebrooks. Peavy struck out Alexi Amarista, but wasn’t able to get out of the inning unscathed, as Wil Nieves sent a grand slam over the left field wall and put the Padres up 4-2.

The Giants tried to come back from the deficit, as Maxwell scored his second run of the game on a Gregor Blanco triple to right field. Instead of pinch hitting for the relieving Yusmeiro Petit with Blanco on third, manager Bruce Bochy had him bat, and strike out to end the rally.

Maxwell had a solid day on Sunday, drawing two walks and scoring both times. He also did his part out in the field, making a hard catch against the right field wall that saved a run and ended the third inning.

Petit came in for Peavy in the fifth inning, and gave up two runs in his 2.2 frames pitched. All four of his hits allowed were for extra bases, finalized by a Will Venable home run and triple from Matt Kemp that put the Padres up 6-4 in the eighth inning and sent Bochy to the bullpen.

After the Padres scored another run in the bottom of the sixth, Buster Posey knocked out his second home run of the season, a solo shot off Dale Thayer and out to left center in the top of the seventh. That would be it for the Giants’ offense, as four runs wouldn’t be enough, although it was more than what was scored their other three games combined.

Tyson Ross made it through six innings while allowing three runs, and exited with his first quality start of 2015. The Padres’ starter gave up five hits and four walks while striking out eight.

Today marks the final day of the Giants first road trip of 2015. San Francisco will head back to AT&T Park with a 3-4 record after taking the series in Arizona and losing this San Diego matchup three games to one. They were able to spoil each of their opponent’s opening days, and will look to win their own opener tomorrow afternoon.

Tomorrow, Chris Heston will be the first Giants’ rookie pitcher to start the home opener since Alan Fowlkes beat the Padres back in 1962. Heston recorded his first win on Wednesday night, allowing just three hits through six scoreless innings against the Arizona Diamondbacks. He’s scheduled to face off against Eddie Butler, who allowed a home run and four walks while striking out five in his 5.2 innings of two-run ball against the Milwaukee Brewers.

First pitch at 1:35pm.

Other Notes:

Casey McGehee will only miss a couple of games after sustaining a bone bruise on his left leg during Saturday’s game. McGehee went down in the third inning and had to leave the game, but a later MRI showed it wasn’t serious. He received a cortisone shot and will rest for a brief while before rejoining the team.

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