SAN DIEGO (AP) -- The San Francisco Giants finally found a way to
win a one-run game.
The Giants took advantage of Todd Walker's throwing error for
the only run of the game and Brad Hennessey combined with five
relievers to lead San Francisco to a 1-0 win over the San Diego
Padres on Monday night.
San Francisco stopped their five-game losing streak and won for
the fourth time in 20 games. During that stretch, the Giants lost
nine straight one-run decisions.
"It's good for us to be on the winning end of a one-run game,"
Eliezer Alfonzo provided the scoring with an RBI single in the
fifth inning as San Francisco won for just the second time in 15
road games since the All-Star break.
"There were a couple of situations there that could have led to
another loss," Giants manager Felipe Alou said.
In addition to Hennessey's solid start and the work of the
bullpen, Alou praised the play of Todd Linden. After replacing left
fielder Barry Bonds in the eighth inning for defensive purposes,
Linden made a diving catch near the line off the bat of Brian Giles
with one out and runners on first and second.
"That play won the game. That ball would have gone for a double
or a triple," Alou said.
"It was starting to slice," Linden said. "There was never a
moment where I didn't think I'd get it."
San Diego lost for the fifth time in seven games and fell 2˝
behind the first-place Dodgers in the NL West.
"We had our chances there with runners on," Padres manager
Bruce Bochy said. "We created those opportunities and you have to
cash them in."
Walker's second error of the game preceded Alfonzo's single that
scored Shea Hillenbrand. After Ray Durham led off with a walk, he
was thrown out trying to steal second. Hillenbrand then hit a
broken-bat grounder to Walker at third. Walker threw wide of first
baseman Adrian Gonzalez for his second error of the game.
"I have that tail on the throw sometimes that I have to work
out," said Walker, who also had an error when he failed to cleanly
field a hard-hit ball from Alfonzo in the third.
Since being acquired in a trade from the Chicago Cubs on July
31, Walker has committed two errors in a game twice. Walker, who
had not played third base in nine years before the trade, made two
errors in his Padres' debut on Aug. 2.
"I said from the beginning that I'm not going to be perfect,"
said Walker, who has primarily played at second base in his career.
"It's not in me to quit or give up."
Hennessey (5-2) won in his first start since July 1, allowing
two hits in 5 2/3 innings. Hennessey, who replaced Jamey Wright in
the starting rotation, struck out three and walked one.
"I was just trying to keep the pitch count down and stretch it
out for as long as I could," Hennessey said.
Armando Benitez, who blew his last three save chances, pitched
out of a jam in the ninth for his 14th in 21 opportunities. With
one out and runners on first and second, he got Josh Barfield to
hit a fly ball to left field and then struck out pinch-hitter Geoff
San Diego catcher Mike Piazza left in the fifth inning after
being hit by a pitch from Hennessey in the right forearm. The
injury was diagnosed as a bruise and he was listed as day to day.
Bochy said that there was swelling on the forearm and that Piazza
"lost feeling in his arm a couple of times."
Hensley allowed one run and four hits in seven innings.
San Diego threatened in the seventh after pinch-hitter Mark Bellhorn singled with one out. Mike Stanton's error on a pickoff
throw allowed Bellhorn to move to second. Stanton then threw a wild
pitch to advance Bellhorn to third before he struck out Khalil Greene and got Barfield on a flyout.
The Padres had runners on first and second with one out in the
eighth when Giles lined a ball to left field off Jack Taschner. But
Linden made a diving catch for the out. Taschner then struck out
Rob Bowen to end the inning.
The Giants' run was the first they had scored in 16
innings. ... The Padres, with the third-fewest errors in the NL,
committed a season-high three for the third time year. Along with
Walker's two errors, Gonzalez committed his fourth. ... Padres SS
Greene is 0-for-11 since coming back after missing six games due to
a sprained middle finger on his left hand.