SAN FRANCISCO – "The Boys Are Back In Town" blared over the sound system at AT&T Park on Monday night as the Giants returned from a nine-game trip. Everyone was back in town, sure, but all the key players weren't on the field.
And it showed. The Giants managed only 10 hits in 13 innings, with four of those coming during their three-run rally in the fourth inning, and dropped a 5-3 decision to the San Diego Padres before an announced sellout crowd.
The Padres tied the score in the seventh and pushed across the decisive run in the 13th.
After a leadoff single by Alexi Amarista off Jose Mijares in the 13th, Chris Denorfia's hard ground ball ate up second baseman Tony Abreu. What looked like a double-play grounder turned into a first-and-third situation with no outs for the Padres.
Pinch hitter Andrew Cashner, a starting pitcher, laid down a beauty of a safety squeeze toward shortstop. The Giants had no play on the ball, with Amarista scoring for a 4-3 lead.
Jake Dunning relieved Mijares three batters later and walked in Yasmani Grandal to make it 5-3.
Padres center fielder Will Venable preserved the 3-3 tie in the 12th with a diving catch, toward the outfield wall, on a long drive off the bat of Juan Perez. Brandon Belt was on second, and he would have scored easily if not for Venable's highlight-reel catch.
The Padres cut the lead to 3-2 on a wild pitch by reliever Jean Machi in the sixth and tied the score off Machi in the seventh.
Giants starter Barry Zito sparkled in front of an adoring home crowd by striking out a season-high eight batters. He left to a standing ovation after 5 2/3 innings with a 3-1 lead.
Zito rebounded well from a game against the Pittsburgh Pirates in which he surrendered 11 hits and eight runs in a 12-8 loss on June 12.
He has a 4-1 record in nine home starts, with an ERA a shade under 2.00. He is 0-4 on the road with an 11.28 ERA in five starts.
The Padres broke open a scoreless game with a run in the third. Zito's counterpart, Edinson Volquez, kick-started the rally with a leadoff double.