The Giants’ bats awoke against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday when Joe Panik, right, celebrated his two-run home run at the plate with Denard Span. (Ross D. Franklin/AP)

The Giants’ bats awoke against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday when Joe Panik, right, celebrated his two-run home run at the plate with Denard Span. (Ross D. Franklin/AP)

Giants hitters help Johnny Cueto beat Zack Grienke in battle of offseason pickups

PHOENIX — Johnny Cueto pitched seven strong innings for San Francisco, Zack Greinke had another rough outing at home for Arizona and the Giants opened a four-game series with a 4-2 victory over the Diamondbacks on Thursday night.

Joe Panik hit a two-run homer off Greinke, who fell to 1-3 in five home starts. Chris Owings had an RBI triple for Arizona.

Cueto (5-1) allowed two runs and eight hits, striking out nine and walking two in a matchup of two of the highest-priced free agent pitchers last offseason. Cueto signed a six-year, $130 million contract, which was dwarfed by Greinke’s six-year, $206.5 million deal.

Greinke (3-3) gave up four runs and eight hits in six innings, raising his ERA to 5.26 in eight starts. Greinke led the majors with a 1.66 ERA last season.

Arizona mounted a serious threat in the ninth against closer Santiago Casilla when a pinch-hit double by Phil Gosselin and single by Jean Segura put runners at first and third with one out. Casilla struck out Brandon Drury, but walked Paul Goldschmidt to load the bases. Left-hander Javier Lopez relieved Casilla and got left-handed batting Jake Lamb to ground out, earning his first save since Sept. 19, 2013.

Greinke has allowed 24 runs in five home starts. Last season, he gave up 19 runs in 17 starts at home for the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Greinke blanked the Giants on one hit through three innings before consecutive singles by Matt Duffy, Buster Posey and Brandon Belt tied it at 1. A fielder’s choice groundout by Hunter Pence gave San Francisco a 2-1 lead.

Denard Span singled to start the fifth. Then, Panik hit Greinke’s first pitch into the right-field seats to make it 4-1.

Arizona scored one in the first on Drury’s RBI single and another in the sixth when Owings tripled into the right-field gap.

Goldschmidt struck out three times and hit into a double play.

Cueto has pitched at least seven innings in all but one of his starts this season.

Angel Pagan missed his 11th consecutive game (hamstring strain), but he went through pregame warmups and could, Bochy said, be in the starting lineup Friday night.

Jeff Samardzija (3.17 ERA) faces the Diamondbacks today for the first time since April 23, 2014. He’ll square off against Shelby Miller (7.36 ERA), who is coming off his first good start of the season.

Joe PanikJohnny CuetoMLBSan Francisco Giants

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