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Bumgarner overcomes slow start, stops Padres

The SportsXchange

SAN DIEGO -- Madison Bumgarner said he didn't make any adjustments after the first inning against the San Diego Padres. The results, though, were as clear as night and day.

Pablo Sandoval homered for the first time in almost two months, and the San Francisco Giants snapped a four-game losing streak with a 4-2 victory over the Padres at Petco Park on Thursday night.

The Giants (41-50) won for only the second time in their last 12 road games and handed the Padres (41-52) their 12th setback in 13 games.

Bumgarner was a major reason. The 6-foot-5 left-hander allowed two runs on three hits in the first inning but limited the Padres to one hit over the next six innings. Bumgarner (10-5), who is headed to next week's All-Star game, held the Padres to four hits overall with six strikeouts and a walk, which was intentional, in seven innings.

"I don't think I made much of (an adjustment)," said Bumgarner, who is 7-2 with a 2.75 ERA this season against National League West opponents. "I feel like I made some good pitches in the first and they just happened to hit them. But I just kept making pitches and throwing strikes and trying to get the first guy in the inning. They still hit some balls hard. They just happened to be right at our defenders, so it worked out in our favor."

Said Giants manager Bruce Bochy, "We needed a lift with our inauspicious start. But that's what good pitchers do, limit the damage. What was impressive about Madison was he was flat for the first inning but he made a nice adjustment and got in a great groove. It was a much, much needed win."

The Padres said Bumgarner was the difference.

"After (the first inning), he threw that backdoor cutter a lot better, and it was a little bit down and away," said Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera, who went 0-for-4. "It was tough to hit. After the first, he had a lot better command of that pitch. He mixed it with fastballs in. He was making really good pitches."

San Francisco reliever Sandy Rosario pitched a scoreless eighth before closer Sergio Romo converted his 20th save by retiring the side in order in the ninth.

Luke Gregerson (4-5) gave up two runs and three hits in the eighth, when the Giants broke a 2-2 tie.

Gregor Blanco's ground-rule double to left with one out in the eighth gave the Giants a 3-2 lead. Buster Posey added an RBI single with two outs in the inning.

Sandoval homered in the fourth -- his ninth of the season but his first since May 21 -- off Padres starter Jason Marquis to start the Giants' rally after they fell into a 2-0 hole.

"(Sandoval) said he's feeling better at the plate and seeing the ball better," Bochy said. "Coming into this game, I think his confidence has grown a bit."

Kensuke Tanaka's single to center scored Sandoval to tie the score at 2 with one out in the sixth. It also chased Marquis, who struggled with his command in the inning before being lifted by manager Bud Black.

Marquis threw 96 pitches (55 for strikes) in 5 1/3 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits with two walks and three strikeouts. It marked the fifth consecutive outing Marquis received a no-decision.

In the first inning, Carlos Quentin gave the Padres a 1-0 lead with an RBI double to left-center, scoring Chris Denorfia. After an intentional walk to Jesus Guzman, Kyle Blanks followed with a groundout that scored Chase Headley for a 2-0 advantage.

Sandoval led off the fourth by driving a 2-2 Marquis pitch into the seats in right to cut the lead in half.

NOTES: Giants RHP George Kontos began serving his three-game suspension Thursday stemming from a June 11 incident with Andrew McCutchen, when the reliever hit the Pirates star with a pitch. Kontos will be eligible to return for Sunday's series finale at San Diego. ... San Francisco RHP Jean Machi was recalled from Triple-A Fresno on Thursday. The Giants sent down LHP Mike Kickham to Fresno on Wednesday. ... Padres 1B Yonder Alonso is expected to return to the starting lineup for Friday's game against the Giants. Alonso has been on the disabled list since June 6 with a fractured right hand. ... Giants RHP Ryan Vogelsong had a bullpen session Thursday that manager Bruce Bochy described as successful. Vogelsong, who threw about 30 pitches, has been on the disabled list since May 21 with a fractured right hand. There is no timetable for his return. ... The game drew a crowd of 31,976.
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