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Pence delivers in ninth

His bases-clearing double lifts Giants to series win

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POSTED July 24, 2014 12:14 a.m.

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Hunter Pence drove in all of San Francisco’s runs with a double in the ninth and Madison Bumgarner pitched eight scoreless innings to lead the Giants to a 3-1 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies on Wednesday night.

Bumgarner (12-7) gave up five hits while striking out six and walking none in a pitchers’ duel with A.J. Burnett.

It was the sixth win in seven games for first-place San Francisco, which moved two games ahead of the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL West. The Giants will look to sweep the four-game series on Thursday.

One night after blowing just his third save in 26 chances, closer Jonathan Papelbon (2-2) took the loss.

The Phillies’ offense, which ranks near the bottom of the NL in several categories, managed just seven hits. They lost their fourth straight and seventh of eight.

Pence broke a scoreless tie with a softly hit blooper down the right-field line off Papelbon on a full count with two outs.

Marlon Byrd drove in Philadelphia’s run in the ninth off Santiago Casilla, who converted his seventh save in 10 chances.

The game was delayed for 59 minutes by a thunderstorm. Following resumption in the top of the fourth, the game was played in a persistent drizzle that got heavy at times until the rain finally stopped for good in the eighth inning.

Burnett pitched eight scoreless innings, striking out six, walking four and allowing four hits, in a performance that had to have impressed the scouts seated behind home plate. The right-hander has been a rumored acquisition for contending clubs as the Phillies are looking to sell at the trade deadline to get younger.

Bumgarner and Burnett allowed the relievers to rest following Tuesday’s 5-hour, 46-minute marathon in which 16 pitchers were used in the Giants’ 9-6, 14-inning victory.

Some small puddles formed on the left side of the infield, but second base umpire Bill Miller never halted the game again after the first stoppage.

Pence was involved in a strange play in the eighth. After leading off with a walk, he took off for second but overslid the bag. He popped up and rather than try to go back to second, he darted toward third as shortstop Jimmy Rollins chased him in a scene reminiscent of tag on the school yard. About halfway to third, Rollins tossed to third baseman Andres Blanco who applied the tag for an unusual 6-5 caught stealing.

It was the second caught stealing in as many attempts for the Giants, as Ehire Adrianza overslid the bag in the sixth and was tagged out by Chase Utley.

NOTES: Burnett moved to 48th all-time in strikeouts, passing Dwight Gooden, with a first-inning fanning of Tyler Colvin. . Philadelphia activated Ruiz (concussion) from the DL. Ruiz had been out since June 26. To make room for Ruiz, the Phillies sent C Cameron Rupp to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Philadelphia also recalled RHP Phillippe Aumont from Lehigh Valley and designated RHP Jeff Manship for assignment. . The teams conclude the four-game series on Thursday with Phillies LHP Cole Hamels (4-5, 2.83) facing RHP Tim Hudson (8-6, 2.78).

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