SAN FRANCISCO -- D-backs pitcher Zack Godley combined a dancing curveball with the Giants' aggressiveness at the plate to set the pace for Arizona's 2-1 win Monday night at AT&T Park.On a night when the D-backs were held to two first-inning runs, Godley and two relievers made it stand up
SAN FRANCISCO -- D-backs pitcher Zack Godley combined a dancing curveball with the Giants' aggressiveness at the plate to set the pace for Arizona's 2-1 win Monday night at AT&T Park.
On a night when the D-backs were held to two first-inning runs, Godley and two relievers made it stand up with a combined five-hitter.
And they didn't have their closer, either.
"He did everything we needed him to do on a night where we might have been a little short in the bullpen and gave us 21 outs," Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said. "The big double plays, making pitches when his back was against the wall and not giving in and throwing quality pitches all night long, that's what he did."
Godley was dominant all night in his first appearance at the Giants' waterfront ballpark. He pitched four-hit ball over seven innings with nine strikeouts, all of them on his curve. The right-hander didn't walk a batter and only allowed two runners past first base -- both in the fifth.
Five of Godley's strikeouts came against San Francisco's Nos. 2 and 3 hitters, Brandon Belt and Andrew McCutchen.
"They were just aggressive and their aggressiveness just played right into what we wanted to do going into the game," Godley said.
Godley was particularly effective with his curveball, which the Giants struggled to locate all night. He threw it 22 times for strikes, including 15 swings and misses.
"Generally speaking, I've had a pretty good feel for it my last start and this start," Godley said. "This one here, they were just more aggressive, and that kind of plays into what we want to do."
Giants outfielder Gregor Blanco, who played with Arizona in 2017, struck out and grounded out against his former teammate.
"It's one of the best curves I've ever seen," Blanco said. "It looks like a cutter, then all of a sudden it disappears."
"The thing that's impressive is that's a veteran team that knows what they have to game plan for, and he still had a good night," Lovullo said. "That speaks volumes about Zack's stuff tonight."
Godley faced the minimum through four innings, worked his way out of a two-on, one-out jam in the fifth, then got Evan Longoria to ground into a double play to end his night in the seventh. Lovullo pulled Godley after 100 pitches.
Yoshihisa Hirano worked the eighth and Archie Bradley pitched the ninth for his second career save because closer Brad Boxberger was given the night off.
"He'd thrown three of the last four games, three of the last five days," Lovullo said. "We wanted to give him a blow."
Paul Goldschmidt briefly broke out of his early-season hitting slump with an RBI triple in the first inning that scored Ketel Marte. A.J. Pollock followed with a sacrifice fly to drive in Goldschmidt.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Working his way out: Godley was masterful most of the night but did some of his best work in the fifth inning after the Giants had runners on the corners with one out. Godley got Hunter Pence to pop out weakly to first base, threw a wild pitch that allowed Brandon Crawford to move up to second, then got Blanco to ground out to keep the shutout intact.
"Just trying to get the ball put on the ground," Godley said. "I was trying to induce a ground-ball double play and just get out of it the best I could, whatever way I could."
No Box, no problem: With Boxberger unavailable, Lovullo turned to Bradley in the ninth. Bradley handled the job easily, striking out Joe Panik and Belt before getting McCutchen to fly out.
"We were piecing together the back end of the day and typical to what we have been doing, we save Archie for the heaviest part of the lineup and it just landed on him being the closer," Lovullo said. "Had it been reversed or another situation, we might have gone some different way but it wound up a win and that's all that matters."
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Godley's night included 20 swinging strikes, 15 coming off his curveball. Both are career highs for the right-hander, whose previous bests were 18 and 13 respectively.
Left-hander Patrick Corbin (2-0, 1.38 ERA) tries to continue his recent run of good fortune against the Giants when the D-backs play the second game of the three-game series Tuesday night at AT&T Park. Corbin is 5-7 lifetime against San Francisco but has a 2.59 ERA over his last 12 appearances vs. the Giants.
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Michael Wagaman is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the D-backs on Monday.