Bullpen preserves Giants win after Green's shot

Bullpen preserves Giants win after Green's shot

SAN FRANCISCO -- Though the Giants took divergent paths to success in their pair of victories during this series against Arizona, there was one constant stepping-stone: Sergio Romo's eighth-inning dominance.

Activated from the 60-day disabled list Monday after overcoming an elbow injury, Romo pitched a scoreless eighth inning for the second straight game Saturday, helping San Francisco seal a 4-2 triumph over the D-backs.

Grant Green provided San Francisco's biggest hit by bashing a two-run homer in the fourth inning to erase a 2-1 deficit. Arizona starter Robbie Ray (4-8) absorbed the decision by allowing three runs, including Green's go-ahead drive, in five innings.

Green's two-run home run

"I thought my stuff was good," Ray said. "My curveball was really good today. I was putting guys away with my curveball and slider and elevating my fastball when I needed to. I felt good."

But San Francisco's bullpen ultimately made the difference as the Giants improved to a season-high 23 games over .500 (56-33) with their 39th win in 54 games. After starter Jake Peavy lasted 4 1/3 innings, Romo and five other relievers combined to yield one hit in 4 2/3 innings.

Romo, a ninth-year veteran, performed his familiar role by providing the bridge in the Giants' pitching sequence toward closer Santiago Casilla, who recorded his 21st save.

"I'm actually looking forward to tomorrow," Romo said. "I'm not worried at all how I'm going to feel. Especially with the All-Star break coming, I'm going to be itching to get an inning tomorrow, too."

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Running from history: Brandon Belt didn't hesitate to round second base and advance to third on his third-inning drive to right-center field. Had Belt been fully aware of the circumstances, however, he might held at second. Belt needs one more double to match Jeff Kent's San Francisco-era franchise record of 28 doubles before the All-Star break.

Belt's RBI triple

I don't got it: After committing a throwing error Friday night, D-backs third baseman Jake Lamb lost a popup in the fourth off the bat of Brandon Crawford. Instead of the first out of the inning, Crawford reached first and scored one out later on Green's home run.

"It's in the sun the whole time and he feels worse than anybody in the clubhouse," D-backs manager Chip Hale said. "It's just the way it goes. Those balls happen here. That's one of the things about playing in the Bay Area, whether it's here or Oakland -- if it stays in the sun, even if you have your glasses on, it's hard to catch."

Crawford reaches thanks to sun

Another Crawford gem: Left-hander Javier Lopez relieved Peavy and yielded Lamb's grounder up the middle with two on and one out. The ball eluded Lopez, but Crawford darted to his left and showed why he's the National League's reigning Gold Glove winner at shortstop by neatly scooping up the ball and making the play.

Lopez was asked whether he made any sort of comment to Crawford.

"I said, 'You're welcome for the highlight reel,'" Lopez related.

Crawford's great play

RISP: The D-backs had scoring opportunities, but aside from a two-run fourth, they failed to cash them in. The D-backs finished the day 3-for-16 with runners in scoring position. Three times they had two runners on with one or no outs, and each time they were unable to score a run.

"I think it's very frustrating," D-backs catcher Tuffy Gosewisch said. "I don't know what it is, if it's trying too hard or trying to do too much."

Suarez strikes out Goldschmidt

WHAT'S NEXT
D-backs: Archie Bradley will get the final start of the first half for the D-backs as they wrap up a three-game series Sunday night with a 5:05 p.m. MST start at AT&T Park. Bradley is 1-1 with a 1.06 ERA in his last three road starts.

Giants: There's no place like home for Madison Bumgarner, who'll take the ball for Sunday's 5:05 p.m. PT start. Away from AT&T Park, he has compiled an excellent ERA (2.38) and WHIP (1.132) this year. But he has been even better at home, where he has recorded a 1.86 ERA and a .931 WHIP.

Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

Steve Gilbert has covered the D-backs for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB.

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.