Giants

Instant Replay: Giants 9, D'backs 8 (10)

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Instant Replay: Giants 9, D'backs 8 (10)

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SAN FRANCISCO After blowing an early four-run lead, the Giants put together another come-from-behind victory, walking off against the Diamondbacks on Marco Scutaros single in the 10th inning.Starting pitching reportBarry Zito finished a 1-2-3 first inning with back-to-back strikeouts, the first swinging and the second looking, and struck out the side in the second to work around Paul Goldschmidts one-out double. Zito didnt have his strikeout pitch working in the third and fourth innings, but still held the Diamondbacks scoreless as he worked with a 4-0 lead.The Diamondbacks got to Zito in the fifth inning, though, as Miguel Montero led off the inning with a single and trotted home on Chris Johnsons no-doubt home run to left. Zito stranded Chris Young on second base after his two-out double to keep Arizona from getting within a run of tying the game.Justin Upton and Jason Kubel put together back-to-back singles to open the sixth and knock Zito from the game. Guillermo Mota, a frequent follow-up to short Zito starts, allowed both of his inherited runners to score.Zitos final line: 5 IP, 7 H, 4 ER, 0 BB, 6 K. He threw 59 of his 89 pitches for strikes.Zito was 36-3 in his Giants career when receiving at least four runs of support while in a game. The Giants offense gave him that magic number in the first, but Zito uncharacteristically didnt return the favor.Bullpen reportBruce Bochy turned to Guillermo Mota with two men on and no outs in the sixth inning and the veteran right-hander had an outing to forget. He got lucky when Paul Goldschmidts drive to left-centerfield hopped over the wall for a ground-rule double, keeping the tying run at third. That run would come across anyway, when Chris Johnson tallied his third RBI on a sacrifice fly. But the Diamondbacks werent done beating up on Mota. Former Giant Cody Ransom worked a walk and pinch-hitter Willie Bloomquist followed with a single to drive in Goldschmidt.With Arizona now leading 5-4, Bochy turned the ball over to George Kontos, coming off his first career win in Houston. Kontos, who has admitted putting more pressure on himself when he inherits another pitchers baserunners, didnt do Mota or the Giants any favors, as he allowed back-to-back singles. Kontos got Justin Upton to fly out to right to end the inning, but not before Arizona batted around for a five-run inning and a 7-4 lead.Brad Penny got the call in the seventh and was in immediate trouble after a leadoff double followed by a walk. But Penny danced out of danger by getting Miguel Montero to fly out and ended the inning with a blind-luck grab of a screaming comebacker for a double play.Shane Loux allowed an Arizona insurance run in the eighth, but was hit hard in what couldve been a much uglier inning if not for the defensive efforts of Pablo Sandoval and Angel Pagan.Recent call-up Jean Machi, a right-hander who saved 15 games for the Fresno Grizzlies this season, made his major-league debut in a one-run game and held his own. He put sure-handed shortstop Brandon Crawford to work, inducing back-to-back infield pop ups before Jason Kubel hit a routine ground ball to short to end the inning.El Mechon blared over the AT&T Park speakers as Sergio Romo ran in from the bullpen to pitch the 10th inning. He struck out the first two Diamondbacks he faced before inducing a weak ground ball to third from Gerardo Parra to end the inning.At the plateThe Giants came into Mondays game averaging just 3.45 runs per home game, ahead of only the Seattle Mariners. They raised that average with their first inning output alone.Angel Pagan lined out on the first pitch, but the Giants strung four consecutive hits together to score first. Marco Scutaro started the rally with a single and Pablo Sandoval kept the line moving with another single. Buster Posey followed with a drive to deep right that Arizonas Justin Upton appeared to have a beat on. But Upton watched as the ball sail over his head and bounced off the wall past him and towards the infield, allowing Scutaro to score easily. Upton had to hustle again when Hunter Pence one-upped Posey with a two-RBI triple into the right-centerfield alleyway. Sanchez drove in Pence with an infield single for a 4-0 San Francisco lead.After the four-run first, the Giants were held scoreless until the seventh inning, when Aubrey Huff led off with a pinch-hit single. Pagan grounded into a fielders choice and the baserunner swap paid off, as the faster Pagan advanced to second on Scutaros grounder to third and came around to score on Sandovals single up the middle.The Giants added two more runs in the eighth with a two-out rally to cut the Diamondbacks lead to one. Pence struck out looking to open the frame and Xavier Nady grounded out to second, but Hector Sanchez and Brandon Crawford hit back-to-back doubles and pinch-hitter Brandon Belt drove in the other Brandon with a single to right. Pinch-runner Gregor Blanco, in for Belt, represented the tying run, but Pagan lined out to right to end the threat.The Diamondbacks turned to J.J. Putz in the ninth, fresh off a blown save in Los Angeles on Sunday, and Scutaro greeted him with a leadoff double to left. Sandoval hit a weak ground ball to second to advance Scutaro and set the stage for Posey. With the tying run 90 feet away and the Arizona infield playing in, Posey laced a ground ball past diving third baseman Chris Johnson for a double and a brand new ballgame. Posey was left stranded to keep the game tied, however, after Putz intentionally walked Pence and struck out Nady and Sanchez. The double was Poseys first career game-tying hit in the 9th inning or later.Crawford led off the 10th inning with a towering chopper behind the pitchers mound that he beat out for an infield single. Big Brett Pill followed with his first career sacrifice bunt to advance the game-winning run into scoring position. Pagan pushed Crawford 90 feet closer to ending the game with a groundout to first base, and Scutaro came through with his 11th career walk-off hit, which was nearly identical to Poseys grounder past diving third baseman Johnson.The Giants finished 9-for-15 with runners in scoring position, including three doubles, a triple and all nine of their RBIs.In fieldBrad Penny made the play of the day, even if it required more instinct than skill, when he snagged Chris Johnsons comebacker in the heel of his glove for one out, then lobbed the ball back to first for a double play.Pablo Sandoval made a pair of nice plays in the eighth to keep the Diamondbacks from putting up a crooked number. With Cody Ransom on third, Sandoval fielded a sharp ground ball off the bat of Chris Young and threw home to Hector Sanchez, who chased Ransom back to third, where Sandoval got the ball back and applied the tag. The next batter, Aaron Hill, ripped a liner right at Sandoval, who stood his ground and hit the dirt to complete the catch.Angel Pagan also helped limit Arizona to one run in the eighth, as he ended the inning with a leaping catch on the warning track just in front of the avocado tree past the centerfield wall.On the basesGregor Blanco took off for second base in the eighth after coming in as a pinch-runner, but Angel Pagan hit the pitch foul. No other Giant attempted a stolen base against Diamondbacks catcher Miguel Montero.AttendanceThe Giants announced a crowd of 42,045 for their 150th consecutive regular season sellout.Up nextThe Giants continue their series with the Diamondbacks on Tuesday night with right-hander Ian Kennedy (12-11, 4.27 ERA) starting opposite fellow right-hander Ryan Vogelsong (12-7, 3.02 ERA). First pitch is scheduled for 7:15 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet Bay Area and Giants Pregame Live kicks off at 6:30 p.m.

Tough luck: Rich Hill throws nine no-hit innings, loses on walk-off HR in 10th

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AP

Tough luck: Rich Hill throws nine no-hit innings, loses on walk-off HR in 10th

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PITTSBURGH -- Dodgers lefty Rich Hill lost his perfect game on an error in the ninth inning, then lost his no-hitter on a leadoff home run in the 10th by Josh Harrison that sent the Pittsburgh Pirates over Los Angeles 1-0 Wednesday night.

Hill became the first pitcher since Pedro Martinez in 1995 to take a no-hit try into extra innings.

The Pirates didn't have a runner until Jordy Mercer led off the ninth with a sharp grounder that smacked off third baseman Logan Forsythe's glove for an error. Hill retired the next three batters.

Hill (9-5) came back out for the 10th and Harrison sent his 99th pitch of the night into the first row of seats in left field, just out of the reach of Los Angeles leftfielder Curtis Granderson. Hill struck out 10 without a walk.

Juan Nicasio (2-5) picked up the win after working the top of the 10th.

After Mercer reached in the ninth, Hill quickly retired the next three batters. Chris Stewart laid down a sacrifice bunt, Jose Osuna grounded out to Forsythe and when shortstop Corey Seager gobbled up a grounder by Starling Marte, Hill held the Pirates hitless for nine innings.

But to get official credit for a no-hitter under Major League Baseball rules, a pitcher must complete the game - going nine innings isn't enough if it goes into extras. Back in 1959, a Pirates pitcher had perhaps the most famous near-miss of all when Harvey Haddix lost his perfect game and the game itself in the 13th at Milwaukee.

In what's been a charmed season for the Dodgers, a 37-year-old journeyman received an ovation from the Pirates crowd at PNC Park as he walked off the mound after the ninth. A large mass of fans clad in Dodger blue sitting behind the Los Angeles dugout rose to its feet after taking in the latest remarkable night in a season full of them for the team chasing the best regular season record in major-league history.

Rather than go to the best bullpen in the majors, Los Angeles manager Dave Roberts sent Hill back out to see if he could keep the no-hitter going.

The appearance of his No. 44 jersey sent a jolt through the crowd of 19,859. It also proved to be one inning too many.

One batter, in fact. Hill could only watch the ball sail over the fence and, without expression, walked to the dugout.

"We knew we had a chance to win with one hit," Harrison said later.

Harrison broke up a no-hit bid by Detroit's Justin Verlander with two outs in the ninth in 2012. That game ended in a Pittsburgh loss. This one ended with Harrison sprinting toward a mob of teammates at home plate while Hill left as the losing pitcher following the best game of his career.

Hill raced through eight innings thanks in part to impeccable control and some spectacular defense behind him, most notably a diving grab by second baseman Chase Utley on a liner by Josh Bell leading off the eighth.

Bell was ruled safe on a close play at first in the second inning, but the call was overturned when replay showed Hill tagged him just before his foot hit the bag. First baseman Adrian Gonzalez also made a sliding grab on a bunt attempt by Harrison in the fourth but otherwise, Hill was in firm command.

Hill had come close to perfection in the past. Last Sept. 10, he retired all 21 batters at Miami before Roberts pulled him after seven innings and 89 pitches because of a recurrence of blisters on his pitching hand. He also was dealing with a groin injury.

In December, Hill re-signed as a free agent with the Dodgers, getting a three-year deal worth $48 million. The contract was quite a reward for a former journeyman who, as recently as 2015, was pitching for the Long Island Ducks in the independent Atlantic League.

Hill began this night with a 47-32 record in a career that began in 2005 and took him from the Chicago Cubs to Baltimore, then to Boston, Cleveland, the Angels, the Yankees, Oakland and the Dodgers. Hill has overcome serious injuries during his career, including a torn labrum in 2009 and elbow ligament replacement surgery in 2011.

Trevor Williams matched Hill out for out, if not pitch for pitch. The Pirates rookie kept Los Angeles off the board for eight innings, letting Hill to line out in the fourth to leave the bases loaded in the fourth, using a pair of double plays in the fifth and sixth and getting Forsythe to line out after a nine-pitch at bat with two on and two outs in the eighth.

The Pirates have been no-hit nine teams in team history. For nine innings it looked like they were on their way to a 10th. One swing from Harrison changed all that.

TRAINER'S ROOM:
Dodgers: LHP Clayton Kershaw (lower back strain) will make a rehab start for Triple-A Oklahoma City on Saturday. Roberts said the team considered having Kershaw return directly to the majors on Saturday but decided to exercise caution with such a large lead in the division. ... RHP Yu Darvish (lower back tightness) will be activated off the disabled list on Sunday and start against Milwaukee.

Pirates: Trainer Todd Tomczyk is "optimistic" RF Gregory Polanco will return from a strained left hamstring before the end of the season. Polanco is currently on the 10-day disabled list for a third time this season because of hamstring trouble. ... C Francisco Cervelli (left wrist inflammation) is eligible to come off the disabled list on Thursday and could return to the lineup.

UP NEXT:
Dodgers: Hyun-Jin Riu (4-6, 3.45 ERA) is undefeated in his last eight starts, going 2-0 with a 2.22 ERA since June 17.

Pirates: Chad Kuhl (6-8, 4.52) will try to bounce back from his worst start of the season on Thursday. Kuhl gave up eight runs in three-plus innings last week against St. Louis.

Two events in Wednesday's win show change in Jarrett Parker's luck

Two events in Wednesday's win show change in Jarrett Parker's luck

SAN FRANCISCO -- There have been more than 6,500 doubles hit in the big leagues this season. Only 55 have had an exit velocity of less than 62 mph. Only five of those 55 came with the go-ahead run on base.

So, it was a somewhat rare event when Jarrett Parker checked his swing, accidentally made contact, and drove in the go-ahead run with a two-run double. On a related note, Parker didn't care.

He's not one for luck or karma. He's also not a big student of exit velocity. Asked if he wanted to know how hard his double was hit, Parker shook his head.

"Nope," he said. "Don't care."

The rest of the team didn't, either. The Giants figure they're owed a few more in this down year, and nobody cared how the winning run came across in a 4-2 victory over the Brewers.

"You hear good things happen when you put the ball in play, and he did," manager Bruce Bochy said. "It's a break for us and we'll take it. It went our way there with that check-swing, which you'll take. We've had some tough breaks."

For a moment after the series clinching win, Parker thought he had suffered another bad one. He felt something grab in his right arm as he went up for the celebratory jump with the rest of the outfield, and he said he was thinking about it as he jogged off the field. Parker missed 96 games earlier this year after fracturing his clavicle. That delayed what appears to be a bit of a breakout. Parker said his arm felt fine once he got back to the clubhouse. 

"I was worried about it at first but I shook it off," he said. "It was just a cramp."

That was a relief for Parker, and it kept the good vibes going. After the way Parker's season started, he certainly is owed a bit more in that department.