LOS ANGELES — The Giants became the first team to score off Kenta Maeda this season. They did not become the first team to put a loss on the back of his baseball card.
Maeda sailed through seven innings at Dodger Stadium and the home team rallied against Jeff Samardzija in the middle innings. The 3-1 loss to the Dodgers left the Giants with a 2-4 road trip.
On a night when shadows covered the field and two red-hot pitchers took the mound, the lineups got off to a slow start. The Giants didn’t have a hit until the third, when Joe Panik blasted a hanging slider into the visiting bullpen.
Samardzija looked like he might need just one run. He dominated the Dodgers early, regularly hitting 96 mph with his fastball and 92 with a good cutter. The Dodgers had just a pair of singles through four scoreless innings, but Samardzija made a big mistake in the fifth.
With the pitcher on deck, one on, two outs and two strikes to Joc Pederson, Samardzija tried to throw a fastball down and away. He yanked it across the plate and Pederson, who hit 26 homers as a rookie, crushed a two-run shot to right.
Maeda retired eight straight before Brandon Crawford’s one-out single in the seventh. Bochy left Samardzija in and called for a bunt that was popped up in front of the mound. Crawford had to freeze and was hung out to dry when Maeda made a perfect throw to second to start a double play.
The Dodgers tacked on a third run in the seventh, as Samardzija was knocked out of the game.
Starting pitching report:
Samardzija was charged with six hits and three earned runs in six-plus innings. He walked three and struck out three.
Josh Osich entered a jam and got two grounders to his reliable middle infielders. He came back out for the eighth and got two quick outs with a sinker that was 97-98.
At the plate:
Buster Posey was hitless in 18 at-bats when he singled off Kenley Jansen in the ninth.
In the field:
Samardzija had to feel pretty good about his decision to come to San Francisco after the bottom of the fourth. Corey Seager’s leadoff single was wiped out when Crawford scooped Posey’s bounced throw to second and put a tag down on Seager, who had been running. Two batters later, Adrian Gonzalez hit a medium grounder to second and Panik and Crawford turned a nifty double play.
The Dodgers announced a crowd of 48,981 people who beat the Clippers-Coachella-Los Angeles traffic.
The Diamondbacks and hotshot prospect Archie Bradley, who will start Monday. Jake Peavy goes for the Giants.