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Giants pin hopes on Hudson in home opener vs. D'backs

(SportsNetwork.com) - The San Francisco Giants will make their 2014 debut at AT&T Park on Tuesday when they host the Arizona Diamondbacks in their home opener.

The season-series between these NL West rivals began last week in Arizona, where the Giants won three out of four games to begin their campaign on a positive note.

Tim Hudson will get the start for the Giants on Tuesday after he held Arizona scoreless during his 7 2/3 innings of work in his first appearance with the club.

The 38-year old right-hander had not pitched in a regular season matchup since fracturing his ankle on July 24. Hudson, who pitched to a 4.26 ERA in six starts during spring training, did not look rusty in his return to the mound as he fanned seven batters and improved to 8-1 all-time versus Arizona last week.

The Giants had their four-game winning streak stopped on Sunday with a 6-2 loss to the Dodgers in Los Angeles. Brandon Belt and Hunter Pence both hit solo home runs in the setback, but San Francisco struck out 16 times collectively.

Center fielder Angel Pagan continued his hot start to the season, going 2- for-4 to improve his batting average to .419.

Pence's solo shot was a step in the right direction for the 30-year old right fielder, who agreed to resign with the club over the offseason on a five-year contract worth 90 million dollars. Pence began the campaign with just one hit in his first 20 at-bats before going 3-of-9 in the Giants' past two games.

"I've had rough starts before," Pence said. "I understand how long the season is. I've been through it before."

Trevor Cahill will be seeking redemption as he appears on the hill opposite of Hudson for the second consecutive start. Cahill fell to 0-2 on the season last week despite surrendering only two runs over six innings when San Francisco visited Chase Field. This will be the 13th time in Cahill's career he has faced the Giants and he is 5-4 against them with a 3.62 ERA.

"I still feel like my fastball command isn't there as much as I would like," Cahill said after his last outing. "I feel like my change up wasn't as good as it has been in the past."

Arizona does have some momentum after its 5-3 decision over Colorado on Sunday. Left fielder Mark Trumbo, who was added to the lineup to provide a powerful bat, hit a two-run homer in the fifth inning to help the D'backs take a 5-0 lead.

Trumbo has homered in four consecutive games, tying a team record that has been accomplished four times previously. The 6-foot-4 outfielder is hitting .314 with five home runs and 13 RBI through the first nine games of the season. Trumbo's two-run bomb on Sunday marked the 100th home run of the 28- year old's career.

First baseman Paul Goldschmidt is also off to a solid start as he is hitting .400, while shortstop Chris Owings is batting .385 over the last seven days.

"We know we're going to score runs, so we've just got to manage games," Wade Miley said after notching his second win of the season in reference to his fellow starters. "I think it will be better from here on out."

San Francisco went 42-40 at home in 2013, its fourth-worst mark since moving into AT&T Park. The D-backs are 0-3 in series openers so far this season.