SAN FRANCISCO -- It might not have been the intent, but manager Bruce Bochy's ejection in the second inning of the Giants' 6-2 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday night certainly appeared to light a fuse for his club.Bochy was agitated after plate umpire Quinn Wolcott issued warnings to
SAN FRANCISCO -- It might not have been the intent, but manager Bruce Bochy's ejection in the second inning of the Giants' 6-2 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Friday night certainly appeared to light a fuse for his club.
Bochy was agitated after plate umpire Quinn Wolcott issued warnings to both dugouts following two pitches from D-backs pitcher Patrick Corbin that traveled dangerously close to Buster Posey. At that point, the D-backs were leading, 2-0, as Giants starter Jeff Samardzija labored through the first two innings. Samardzija's pitch placement was erratic, too, and resulted in him hitting Jean Segura in the top of the second. The Giants felt Corbin might be trying to return the favor, and Bochy didn't think it warranted his dugout getting warned as well.
"I understand they're not happy their guy got hit, but I can't have Buster being the target," Bochy said. "I mean, that's enough. That's when guys get hurt. It's about playing the game."
The momentum quickly shifted after Bochy left the game. Corbin walked Posey, and one at-bat later, Brandon Crawford sent the AT&T Park crowd into a frenzy with a two-run home run to the right-field arcade to tie the game.
"I don't think it was Bochy so much as those guys throwing at Buster twice. That fired me up," Crawford said. "When he walked, I wanted to make him pay for doing that."
An inning later, the Giants tacked on two more runs, thanks to a throwing error from D-backs third baseman Jake Lamb as well as an RBI single from Crawford. And after Samardzija settled in on the mound, the Giants cruised to a series-opening win.
In the third, Samardzija found the control he had been desperately searching for while throwing 50 pitches in the first two innings. Samardzija, who has battled with consistency issues for the past month, retired 12 of the next 15 batters he faced and didn't allow a runner to get into scoring position again until the seventh. He also struck out six, and with help from his bullpen, the D-backs were held scoreless for the final eight innings.
"It was a tough way to start the game, but I liked the way it finished," said Samardzija, who also scored a run after hitting a leadoff double in the third.
The performance gave Samardzija back-to-back solid outings heading into the All-Star break. After experiencing a tumultuous June, in which he allowed 21 runs in 27 2/3 innings, he enters the break having done exactly what the Giants were hoping, according to Bochy.
"He's had a couple hiccups, but overall, I think if you look at the body of work, it's been pretty good," said Bochy.
In a game that wasn't short on tempers -- D-backs manager Chip Hale was ejected in the fifth inning -- the Giants players channeled their emotions effectively Friday, with both Samardzija and Crawford highlighting the collective performance. Crawford finished his night 3-for-3 with three RBIs.
"It's cool to see everyone get fired up. It's a long season, so whatever it takes to get going, you use it," said Samardzija.
Justin Wise is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area.