Globe iconLogin iconRecap iconSearch iconTickets icon
news

MLB News

Shark, SF no match for sharp JV, Astros

Special to MLB.com

HOUSTON -- The Giants are finding out firsthand how good the Astros' pitching is. A two-game Interleague set against the reigning World Series champions was more than enough for the National League club, which on Wednesday afternoon dropped the finale, 4-1, at Minute Maid Park.

Jeff Samardzija pitched well for three innings. But he faltered over the next two, and the Giants generated little offense against Justin Verlander, to fall two games below .500 (24-26) on the season.

View Full Game Coverage

HOUSTON -- The Giants are finding out firsthand how good the Astros' pitching is. A two-game Interleague set against the reigning World Series champions was more than enough for the National League club, which on Wednesday afternoon dropped the finale, 4-1, at Minute Maid Park.

Jeff Samardzija pitched well for three innings. But he faltered over the next two, and the Giants generated little offense against Justin Verlander, to fall two games below .500 (24-26) on the season.

View Full Game Coverage

Video: SF@HOU: Samardzija on control issues in 4-1 loss

"We just couldn't get him through that fifth," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "After that first inning [two walks], he settled in and was doing a good job. That's a tough one, when you're going against a guy like Verlander, to give up three runs there.

"It's such a good staff, you have your hands full with them [Houston]. We just couldn't do much offensively."

Video: SF@HOU: Bochy on Samardzija, bullpen after 4-1 loss

San Francisco out-hit Houston, 6-5, with Gorkys Hernandez and Brandon Belt getting two hits apiece. But Samardzija (1-3) walked five batters and allowed four runs (three earned) and four hits in 4 2/3 innings. In 34 2/3 innings this season, he has issued 23 walks with 25 strikeouts.

Samardzija (1-3) didn't allow a hit until George Springer's two-out single in the third. But the fourth and fifth innings were taxing for the big right-hander, who gave up a run in the fourth and couldn't finish the fifth after giving up three more, including a two-run home run to Springer.

Video: SF@HOU: Hernandez triples to CF for Giants' first hit

"For three innings, he was hitting his spots," Bochy said.

Added Samardzija on his performance: "I just gave up too many free passes. I made myself work in situations when you might not have to. Too many free passes against a good team, and they end up getting too many looks at you."

Video: SF@HOU: Posey plates Hernandez to put Giants on top

After scoring just two runs in Tuesday's 11-2 defeat to Houston in the series opener, San Francisco struggled again offensively on Wednesday. Buster Posey's fourth-inning sacrifice fly scored Hernandez for the game's first run. Hernandez, who opened the inning with a triple over the head of center fielder Tony Kemp, was San Francisco's first baserunner.

Brandon Crawford, who homered in two of his previous three games, extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a seventh-inning single off the left ankle of reliever Will Harris.

Video: SF@HOU: Crawford singles to extend hitting streak

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Springer does damage: With one out in the fifth of a 1-1 game, Springer connected for his 10th home run of the season. Springer's two-run homer scored Kemp, and it was the catalyst of a three-run inning that the Giants couldn't overcome.

"I left a slider on the plate," Samardzija said. "If it had some run on it, and it gets on the outer half of the plate, we have a pretty good chance of getting an out there."

Video: SF@HOU: Springer demolishes 2-run homer to left field

HE SAID IT
"He was busting tail to get to it, I think he just over ran it. He had a little bit more time and then he might have lost it." -- Bochy, on right fielder Andrew McCutchen, who was unable to make a long running catch on Yuli Gurriel's fly ball with two outs in the fourth that allowed Carlos Correa to score and tie the game at 1

Video: SF@HOU: Correa scores from first on McCutchen's error

MITEL REPLAY OF THE DAY
The Giants were successful in challenging a safe call at first base in the eighth inning. The call was overturned when a replay official determined that first baseman Pablo Sandoval touched the base when the ball contacted the interior of his glove. Correa was originally ruled safe after reliever Cory Gearrin's throw pulled Sandoval off the bag. Gearrin fielded the ball after the one-hop comebacker hit him in the left foot.

Video: SF@HOU: Giants nab Correa as call is overturned

UP NEXT
After an off-day on Thursday, Derek Holland will try to get on track as the Giants' road trip continues on Friday against the Cubs at Wrigley Field. Making his 10th start of the season, the left-hander is 2-5 with a 4.94 ERA and coming off a loss to the Rockies in which his 112 pitches were the most he's thrown in a game since 2015. He'll oppose Kyle Hendricks, and first pitch is set for 11:20 a.m. PT.

Richard Dean is a contributor to MLB.com based in Houston.

San Francisco Giants, Buster Posey, Jeff Samardzija