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Belt, Giants back Holland with 5-run inning

First baseman finishes 3-for-4, lifts batting average to .305
Special to MLB.com

SAN FRANCISCO -- Brandon Belt is missing his appendix, but his swing is doing just fine, thank you very much.

The Giants' first baseman had two singles and a double Wednesday, his best day at the plate since returning from the disabled list five games ago. His double in the sixth inning tied the game and placed runners at second and third, setting up what would be a breakthrough five-run inning in San Francisco's 6-5 win over the Miami Marlins at AT&T Park.

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SAN FRANCISCO -- Brandon Belt is missing his appendix, but his swing is doing just fine, thank you very much.

The Giants' first baseman had two singles and a double Wednesday, his best day at the plate since returning from the disabled list five games ago. His double in the sixth inning tied the game and placed runners at second and third, setting up what would be a breakthrough five-run inning in San Francisco's 6-5 win over the Miami Marlins at AT&T Park.

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"I'm not sure I feel exactly how I did a couple of weeks ago," Belt said after lifting his batting average to .305. He'd slipped under .300 thanks in part to a 2-for-14 skid after the surgery. "But I feel good enough to be productive out here, that's for sure."

Video: MIA@SF: Belt lines an RBI double to right-center

To hear manager Bruce Bochy talk about it, Belt's best swing of the day came in the seventh inning, when the lefty-swinging first baseman's fly to deep center was hauled in by Lewis Brinson with a man on.

"I thought that ball flew out to center. I thought he got enough of that," Bochy said. "It didn't quite go. I really thought our left-handers had to come through for us today because [Marlins starter Jose Urena] would be tough on righties."

Video: MIA@SF: Giants turn DP on Urena's baserunning error

He was until the sixth, when the Giants' first walk and a single by Joe Panik brought up Belt, whose deep fly went for a ground-rule double. Belt, who has three incisions as souvenirs of his surgery, suggested that he's back. But he wants the appendix -- framed.

"I do not need an appendix," he said, but he's not willing to let it go. "Maybe I'll put it beside the bed or up on the mantle. I just want to keep it. It's mine."

Video: MIA@SF: Hernandez singles in 2 runs after 14-pitch AB

The other key hit in the sixth inning was a two-out, two-run single from Gorkys Hernandez. It covered 14 pitches from Urena, but Belt, who had a record 21-pitch at-bat earlier this year, wasn't worried his record would slip away, saying the hit itself was "huge for us" and was "awesome." But the 14-pitch length of the AB he laughingly dismissed as "cute."

Starter Derek Holland (5-7) got the win, giving up three runs in six-plus innings. The key was his allowing just one run in the first six innings while waiting for the offense to kick in. He's 3-1 in his last five starts, and the Giants are 4-1 in those games.

Video: MIA@SF: Holland strikes out 7 across 6-plus innings

"Guys like that are hugely important," Belt said of Holland, who has gotten a larger role than originally thought with injuries to Madison Bumgarner and Johnny Cueto.

Holland changed up and moved to the first-base side of the rubber instead of working from the third-base side. His curve seemed to have extra bite.

"I was just trying something different," he said. "The main thing is that Hundo [catcher Nick Hundley] and I did a great job of establishing, getting ahead of hitters." 

MOMENT THAT MATTERED
Sam Dyson was named the closer with Hunter Strickland on the DL, but after Dyson allowed the Marlins two runs and had two men on base, it was up to Reyes Moronta to take over. The rookie, who first pitched in 2017, struck out J.B. Shuck to earn his first Major League save.

Video: MIA@SF: Moronta K's Shuck, locks down 1st career save

UP NEXT
Bumgarner, who has made three starts without getting a win since coming off the disabled list, starts the opener of a four-game series against the Padres at AT&T Park on Thursday. It's the second consecutive year the lefty hasn't registered a win in his first three starts; a year ago, he needed seven starts to get his first victory. The Giants also get shortstop Brandon Crawford back after he took three days off for the birth of his fourth child. Tyson Ross starts for the Padres, with first pitch at 7:15 p.m. PT.

John Hickey is a contributor to MLB.com based in San Francisco.

San Francisco Giants, Brandon Belt, Derek Holland