Non-contending baseball teams typically let the youngsters take the reins in September, but a mix of veterans and youth ledthe San Francisco Giants to a 5-4 win over the San Diego Padres on Tuesday night.
Hunter Pence knocked in three runs with a homer and a double, while rookie Chris Shaw brought home the go-ahead runswith an eighth-inning single as the Giants won their fourth out of their last five games, getting the taste of an 11-game losingstreak out of their mouths.
The home run — a two-run shot off of lefty and Newark native Joey Lucchesi in the top of the second — was just Pence’s thirdof the season, but it put San Francisco ahead 2-1. Franmil Reyes knocked in Freddy Galvis with a third-inning single off DerekHolland to bring the hosts even, but Pence struck again in the fourth with a double to score Nick Hundley.
The Giants (72-80) squandered a chance to add on in the top of the fifth. With men on second and third with no outs after awild pitch, Lucchesi struck out Evan Longoria, got Hundley on a force out to nail the runner at the plate and struck out AramisGarcia to end the inning. San Diego (60-92) immediately took momentum in the bottom half, with A.J. Ellis drawing a leadoffwalk and Reyes hitting a go-ahead homer, his 16th of the year.
Though the Giants don’t have tons of shining prospects like San Diego’s Reyes to give exposure to, Shaw is certainly a piecewho could factor into the team’s future, and he continued his hot streak with the go-ahead knock on Tuesday. He broke outof his 1-for-22 slump with two hits Sunday, had three in Monday’s win over the Padres and walked earlier in Tuesday’s gamebefore delivering a two-run, bases-loaded single in the eighth off Craig Stammen, who had been one of San Diego’s bestrelievers for most of the year. Longoria had led off the inning with a single and Hundley reached on a Cory Spangenberg error.Brandon Crawford walked to load the bases, and Shaw came through with the go-ahead hit.
Though Stammen faltered, the Giants’ relievers didn’t. Sam Dyson pitched the seventh and got the win, Mark Melanconescaped a jam in the eighth and Will Smith closed things out with his 14th save of the year.