San Francisco, CA – Pinch-hitter Gregor Blanco came through with a go-ahead two-run triple as the San Francisco Giants scored three times in the seventh inning to record a 4-2 victory over the San Diego Padres in a testy finale of a three-game series at AT&T Park.
Blanco's clutch hit off Luke Gregerson enabled Madison Bumgarner (7-4) to notch his third straight winning start after the left-hander held the Padres to two runs and three hits while striking out eight over seven strong innings.
Both runs allowed by Bumgarner came on solo homers, including one from Jesus Guzman that snapped a 1-1 tie in the top of the seventh.
Guzman and Bumgarner were also involved in a contentious moment earlier in the contest, with the Giants' hurler brushing back the first baseman during the second inning in apparent retaliation for Guzman's exuberant celebration after cracking a two-run homer during Tuesday's 5-4 loss to San Francisco. The incident triggered both benches to clear, though no punches were thrown or ejections handed out.
Will Venable also homered for the Padres, who had a season-high seven-game win streak halted with Tuesday's setback.
Marco Scutaro added an RBI single during San Francisco's eighth-inning rally while finishing 2-for-4, with Hunter Pence also collecting two hits along with a run scored.
Gregerson (4-3) was tagged for four straight hits and two runs while failing to get an out in relief of Eric Stults, who yielded just two runs in a sharp 6 1/3-inning no-decision.
"Their guy was pitching great and we battled through," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said of Stults. "He was mixing speeds well."
Stults carried a 2-1 lead into the bottom of the seventh and retired his eighth consecutive batter before surrendering a single to Tony Abreu and giving way to Gregerson, who was greeted by Hector Sanchez's pinch-hit single to right that brought the tying run to third. Blanco then stepped in a ripped a deep fly ball to the base of the center-field wall that knocked in Abreu and pinch-runner Brandon Crawford and put the Giants in front.
Scutaro followed with a base hit up the middle to extend the margin to 4-2.
"I made one good pitch out of the [four] hits," Gregerson remarked. "Why? I don't know. It's one of those days where I didn't finish the pitches."
The Padres failed to threaten over their final two innings, with Jake Dunning giving up just one hit in the eighth and Sergio Romo tossing a 1-2-3 ninth to nail down his 18th save.
A low-scoring contest wasn't without tension early on, as Guzman was greeted in his initial at-bat by a pitch that Bumgarner fired behind him. The San Diego hitter immediately stepped towards the mound with his bat pointed towards Bumgarner, and the two exchanged words as both benches emptied before order was restored.
"It's part of the game," Guzman said afterward. "I will forget it."
Venable provided some fireworks of a different sort when he crushed Bumgarner's offering over the wall in right to give San Diego a 1-0 edge in the third. Stults was able to protect the lead by getting reigning NL MVP Buster Posey to bounce into an inning-ending double play with two on in the bottom of the frame, but couldn't escape trouble in the fourth.
The Giants strung together three consecutive singles to start their half of the inning, with San Diego left fielder Kyle Blanks unable to come up with a diving catch on Brandon Belt's bloop shot down the line as Pence crossed the plate.
Bumgarner didn't give up another hit after Venable's blast until Guzman got a measure of revenge, socking a first-pitch changeup into the left-field seats to break the 1-1 deadlock.
Crawford was unavailable to hit or field after spraining his right hand in Tuesday's matchup ... San Diego placed shortstop and leadoff hitter Everth Cabrera on the 15-day disabled list prior to the game, with outfielder Jaff Decker recalled from Triple-A Tucson ... San Francisco's Joaquin Arias extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a fourth-inning single ... Bumgarner, who was making his 100th major league start, remained unbeaten (3-0) in eight career home assignments against the Padres ... San Diego has hit an MLB-best 24 homers over a 15-game span since June 4.