ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — The San Francisco Giants nearly added to their impressive collection of two-out rallies Sunday after being held to only one hit through eight innings.
But the Giants fell short against the Texas Rangers, losing 2-1 after having the bases loaded before Hunter Pence grounded into a game-ending double play.
San Francisco went into Sunday leading the major leagues with 199 runs scored with two outs. In spoiling Cole Hamels’ Texas debut on Saturday, the Giants scored three runs in the eighth inning to tie the game after their first two batters were retired.
“It definitely felt like it was going to happen again,” said Pence, who played collegiately only a short drive from Globe Life Park at Texas-Arlington. “We all think we’re going to win until the last out is made.”
San Francisco had been one-hit by left-hander Martin Perez (1-2) before Angel Pagan’s one-out double in the ninth. Left-hander Jake Diekman walked Nori Aoki, and Matt Duffy greeted right-hander Sam Dyson with a single to center to load the bases.
Buster Posey singled to center to score Pagan and leave the bases loaded before Pence’s grounder to shortstop Elvis Andrus on a 2-0 pitch started the game-ending play.
“I definitely don’t feel great about my at-bat,” said Pence, whose 11th-inning home run Saturday pushed the Giants to a 9-7 win. “But you’ve also got to give some credit to Dyson.”
Perez’s performance overshadowed the San Francisco debut of recently acquired right-hander Mike Leake (9-6). He allowed two runs, on a sixth-inning homer by Josh Hamilton, in 6 1-3 innings. Leake held to form by working fast.
“I don’t like to mess around,” said Leake, who won his last four starts for the Cincinnati Reds. “Putting on a different uniform’s always a little weird. But once it got going, it felt like just another game.”
Texas won despite going 0 for 7 with runners in scoring position, including two inning-ending double plays. Leake said Hamilton’s homer came on a curveball that he left high in the strike zone.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy was impressed with his newest starter.
“Had good command of his stuff. Mixed it up well. Pitched well in traffic,” Bochy said. “You see the energy in this kid. The way he runs out to the mound. The way he moves around and his pace.”
The Giants’ 11-4 record since the All-Star break is second only to Philadelphia’s 12-3.
The Giants made their first appearance in Arlington since winning two of three games during the 2010 World Series, which resulted in their first world championship since the franchise moved to San Francisco before the 1958 season. All three games this weekend were played in temperatures in the mid- to upper 90s, but Bochy said his players were probably acclimated for Sunday’s afternoon game following the two hot night games.
Giants: 2B Joe Panik missed his third game in six days because of back stiffness. Bochy said Panik might need to also miss Monday’s game.
Rangers: RHP Tanner Scheppers, Texas’ eighth-inning setup man, was placed on the 15-day DL with left knee inflammation. To fill his spot on the active roster, RHP Phil Klein was recalled from Triple-A Round Rock.
Giants: Atlanta will be the middle stop of a three-city, 10-game road trip. RHP Matt Cain (2-2) allowed four runs in six innings last Wednesday losing at Milwaukee.
Rangers: RHP Colby Lewis (11-4) will start at home against Houston, one day following his 36th birthday.