SAN FRANCISCO -- Madison Bumgarner delivered a typical performance to halt an atypical losing streak Monday night as the San Francisco Giants outlasted the San Diego Padres, 5-4.
The Giants had lost the last three games started by Bumgarner, who personally absorbed the decision in two of those defeats. Never had they dropped four consecutive outings of Bumgarner's. It didn't happen this time, either, as the left-hander struck out nine in 6 2/3 innings while allowing two runs and six hits.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy credited his bullpen for a job well done. Though Hunter Strickland yielded a pair of eighth-inning runs, four other relievers combined to fend off the Padres. But, Bochy added, "It all started with Bum. [He] allowed me to make all those moves because he got us deep into the game."
"He's a clutch player. ... He came through in a big way today," Bochy said of Pagan.
Every Giants starting position player hit safely except for Brandon Belt, who walked three times and scored twice. Jemile Weeks and Matt Kemp kept San Diego in the game by doubling and scoring in the third and sixth innings, respectively. Kemp finished 3-for-5.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED Span's slick play: With runners on first and second, one out and the score tied, 1-1, in the third inning, the Padres appeared destined to forge ahead when Kemp launched a drive to deep center field. Denard Span tracked the ball expertly, timed his leap perfectly and caught the ball about a foot below the top of the wall. Jon Jay tagged up and went to third on the play, but Bumgarner escaped further trouble by slipping a called third strike past Melvin Upton Jr.
"I think he's getting more and more accustomed to center field here," Bochy said of Span, who signed with the Giants as a free agent last offseason.
"You never know what the wind's going to do here," said Padres manager Andy Green. "Sometimes the ball flies, sometimes it holds up. I think that one decided to stop going."
Don't test Melvin: With one out in the third inning, Giants third baseman Matt Duffy hit a liner to left, which appeared destined to become a double. But Upton had other ideas. He ranged to his right, coolly set his feet and delivered an absolute rocket to second baseman Weeks, who applied the tag. Without question, it was one of the best throws by a Padres outfielder this season.
A walk is as good as a ... Belt went 0-for-1 but contributed handsomely to San Francisco's offense by walking three times and scoring twice. On his way to a three-hit performance, Pagan drove in Belt by singling in the second inning and doubling in the fourth.
Belt, who has never walked more than 56 times in any Major League season, has drawn a team-high 13 free passes.
Behind in the count: Padres starter Drew Pomeranz was arguably the club's best pitcher through his first three outings, but he struggled Monday, needing 101 pitches to get through 4 1/3 innings while allowing four runs (three earned).
"I just wasn't going after them like I had been the past few starts," Pomeranz said. "I was in a lot of bad counts, and it drove my pitch count up. That's not what you want."
"Obviously we don't want those things to happen. I don't know if anybody takes it more seriously than the catchers. I don't know if anybody fights harder to keep the ball in front of them than Derek Norris does. He takes a lot of pride in it, does a very good job. It was an inopportune time [for the passed balls] today." -- Green on the two passed balls and two wild pitches with Norris behind the dish
UPON FURTHER REVIEW
The Giants challenged a safe call on Upton's eighth-inning stolen base. The ultimate ruling was that the play should stand as called.
San Francisco requested a crew-chief review in the eighth inning, believing that Kemp trapped Duffy's line drive to right field. Following the review, this play also was deemed to stand as called.
Green got in on the action in the top of the ninth, challenging a close play at first base on a Wil Myers grounder. For the third time, the umpires' call didn't change, as the ruling on the field was confirmed.
"It was close in the ninth inning with two outs, so I think you're obligated to your team to take that chance," Green said.
WHAT'S NEXT Padres:James Shields remains in search of his first victory as he faces the Giants Tuesday night at 7:15 p.m. PT. The veteran right-hander faced San Francisco twice last season in San Diego and was very good in both. But in his lone regular-season start at AT&T Park, he was roughed up for seven runs in four innings.
Giants: Having posted winning records at home against the Padres for five years in a row, the Giants will try to take a step toward extending that streak in Tuesday's 7:15 p.m. PT encounter with San Diego. The mound matchup pits Johnny Cueto (3-1), San Francisco's leading winner, against Shields (0-3), who lost to the Giants twice during the 2014 World Series.
AJ Cassavell covers the Padres for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ajcassavell. Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com 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.