Sharp defense helps Giants subdue Marlins

Sharp defense helps Giants subdue Marlins

SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants asserted their defensive presence immediately in Saturday night's 7-2 victory over the Miami Marlins and didn't let up.

The effect of San Francisco's defense was evident from the very first out, when third baseman Matt Duffy reached past the dugout railing to grab Dee Gordon's popup, to the ninth inning, when second baseman Joe Panik and shortstop Brandon Crawford collaborated on a double play. Overall, San Francisco's defense remained as much of a force as the offense's procession of 13 hits and starter Jake Peavy's resolute pitching.

"That's more like us," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "We just have to get consistent with this and we'll be fine."

Duffy's difficult catch

The Giants ranged from consistent to spectacular as they captured their second straight game against Miami. Catcher Buster Posey foiled Marcell Ozuna's first-inning stolen-base attempt with a one-hop throw. Panik and Crawford completed their first double play of the game, which was relatively simple but still necessary, on Adeiny Hechavarria's second-inning grounder.

Posey throws out Ozuna

Then Peavy recorded the play of the evening one inning later when he slid to grab Christian Yelich's grounder a few feet off to the third-base side of the mound and made a rushed yet accurate throw to first base for the inning-ending out. Had Peavy not retired Yelich, Ozuna, who had just hit a run-scoring triple, would have scored the tying run. The rest of the game might have unfolded differently.

Peavy's slick play

"I was happy about the outcome of that, being able to make that play," Peavy said. "Saved a run. I don't know if Duffy would have had a play or not. I felt like it was one of those suicide plays -- either you make it or you don't -- and I was fortunate enough to."

Panik's difficult play on Jeff Mathis christened the seventh inning and spared Peavy from adversity as he worked toward completing seven innings for the first time this season. Panik ranged up the middle to make a backhanded stop of Mathis' grounder and flung the ball with enough gusto to record the out at first base.

Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.