Samardzija sharp as Giants edge A's

Samardzija sharp as Giants edge A's

SAN FRANCISCO -- Jeff Samardzija proved that he's ready for the regular season, recording his second straight scoreless outing Friday night in the Giants' 2-1 victory over the A's.

Samardzija worked the first five innings, allowing one hit while walking one and striking out six. The right-hander, who's projected to be San Francisco's No. 4 starter, finished the exhibition season with nine scoreless innings in two games. He surrendered three hits in that span.

"It's nice when you know in the bullpen that you have your stuff and you're not having to force everything," said Samardzija, who attributed his clean innings to his slider.

The Giants' rotation overall will enter the regular season with momentum. Samardzija, Madison Bumgarner and Johnny Cueto, three of the five starters, combined to allow two runs and 11 hits over 17 innings with one walk and 17 strikeouts in their final exhibition appearances.

Aside from yielding Brandon Crawford's second-inning homer, A's right-hander Jharel Cotton looked effective, allowing five hits in four innings. Oakland's projected No. 3 starter walked one and struck out two.

Crawford's solo home run

"This Spring Training was good," Cotton said. "Now time for the real stuff to start."

Coupled with Sean Manaea's strong outing Thursday, when he tossed four perfect innings, Oakland manager Bob Melvin said he's happy with his two young pitchers heading into Opening Day.

"A little bit up in the zone early in the game but he made the adjustment and got the ball down," Melvin said of Cotton. "He only gave up one run. Timing-wise, for those last two guys, it's good confidence-wise rolling into the season."

Cotton whiffs Pence

The Giants maintained a one-run lead until the eighth inning, when Jaff Decker's two-out double off Hunter Strickland scored Mark Canha and drew the A's even. After Brandon Belt's single and Hunter Pence's double in the bottom of the frame, Eduardo Nunez beat out a potential inning-ending double play to allow Belt to come home with the go-ahead run.

Nunez's RBI fielder's choice

A's Up Next: Oakland's No. 4 and No. 5 starters are scheduled to pitch in the team's final spring tuneup Saturday at 12:05 p.m. PT against the Giants, live on MLB.TV.. Andrew Triggs is slated to start the contest before fellow righty Raul Alcantara will take over in relief. Triggs, 28, has a 7.78 ERA, 1.37 WHIP and 16 strikeouts in 19 2/3 innings this spring, while the 24-year-old Alcantara has a 4.50 ERA, 1.35 WHIP and nine strikeouts in 20 innings.

Giants Up Next: Part of the Giants' future will be on display Saturday in Oakland, where right-hander Tyler Beede, the club's top prospect, will start the 1:05 p.m. PT encounter for San Francisco, live on MLB.TV.. Beede already has been reassigned to the Minors and will begin the season at Triple-A Sacramento, but the Giants want to get a look at him under higher-profile conditions.

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

Alex Espinoza is a contributor to and covered the A's on Friday.

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.