Pollock's key hit rewards Ray's stellar start

Pollock's key hit rewards Ray's stellar start

SAN FRANCISCO -- A.J. Pollock delivered for the third straight game, this time knocking a two-run double in the seventh to give the D-backs a 3-2 win over the Giants on Friday night at AT&T Park.

With two on and one out, Pollock pulled a fastball from Jeff Samardzija down the left-field line and through the Giants bullpen, scoring Daniel Descalso and Ketel Marte before Pollock was thrown out trying to take third. It gave Pollock 10 RBIs in his last three games after back-to-back big nights against the Rockies.

"We did a good job of getting on in front of me. You've got to get some runners on and put some pressure on him, because he was really on a roll there," Pollock said. "They did a great job in front of me and I was able to get just enough down the line. That's baseball, man. Just enough to get the runners in."

D-backs manager Torey Lovullo added, "I thought it was a great effort all the way around. You're down late, you're just looking for one key moment. In a key spot, A.J. comes up with that double that scored two runs. We built the inning, we got that hit at the right time. It was a special, special moment for us."

Arizona left-hander Robbie Ray (14-5), who came off the disabled list Aug. 24 after recovering from a concussion, extended his personal winning streak to five straight starts, going seven innings and allowing two runs (one earned) to drop the D-backs' magic number for clinching a postseason spot to seven. Ray struck out 10 to give him 206 on the season, his second consecutive 200-strikeout campaign.

Ray K's 10 in 10 seconds

"Nobody deserves more credit for tonight than Robbie Ray. He was outstanding for seven innings," Lovullo said. "It's really been an impressive run that he's been on since he returned."

Samardzija had a bounce-back start, allowing three runs over eight innings. He threw 106 pitches but took his career-high 14th loss of the year. Joe Panik (2-for-4) and Hunter Pence (2-for-3) delivered the bulk of San Francisco's offense as the Giants scored in the first and sixth innings.

"We got what we needed," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "We just had a tough time putting a couple runs across when we should have."

Pence's RBI double

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Ray rebounds from miscue: The Giants took the lead in the sixth when Ray dropped a throw from Paul Goldschmidt covering first, letting Samardzija score on Pence's one-out infield single. But the left-hander recovered by striking out Buster Posey and Nick Hundley, limiting the damage at one run and setting up Arizona for its two-run seventh.

"To shut it down right there and be able to get the team in the dugout, score some huge runs there to put us up, and then go back out there and put up a zero was big," Ray said.

Samardzija scores on hit, error

Descalso delivers: Descalso was involved in both Arizona scoring plays on the night, first knocking in Paul Goldschmidt with a triple just out of Pence's reach in the second. Descalso added a single in the seventh and scored the tying run on Pollock's game-winning double, capping off a 2-for-4 night for the veteran infielder.

"He had a couple of nice hits today and just a really good approach," Lovullo said. "He's been that guy all year long. He walks up there in any environment any time and gives you exactly what he's supposed to. He's part of that inning, he's part of everything he did offensively."

Descalso's RBI triple

"I felt like I had a really good jump," said Pence, who left the game after seven innings with lower back spasms. "I'm running this way, it's going that way. I extended out best I could at full speed and it just hit off the end of my glove."

QUOTABLE
"I'm feeling really good. I feel good with all three of my pitches. I don't know if anything's changed throughout the year, I'm just going out there every five days and putting up zeros. That's the main thing, giving my team a chance to win. I feel like I've stayed fairly consistent all year with it." -- Ray

"He's got that football mentality and it's all about winning. That's what you love about him. I think he's fed up with losing." -- Bochy, on Samardzija's displeasure after allowing the go-ahead run to Pollock

WHAT'S NEXT
D-backs: Right-hander Zack Greinke (16-6, 3.01 ERA) will look to extend his strong stretch in Saturday's 6:05 p.m. MST game. He's thrown six innings or more in eight of his last 10 starts, including back-to-back seven-inning outings.

Giants: Madison Bumgarner (3-8, 3.55 ERA) takes the mound for Saturday's 6:05 p.m. PT contest. The lefty allowed a season-high six runs in his last start against the White Sox but has done well against the D-backs (2.58 ERA) in his career.

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

Jonathan Hawthorne is a reporter for MLB.com based in the Bay Area.

Alex Simon is a reporter for MLB.com and covered the D-backs on Friday. Follow him on Twitter at @alexsimon99.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.