SAN FRANCISCO — Jeff Samardzija had to get through starts at Miller Park and Coors Field, and a Sunday night game against the Dodgers, before making his home debut. The wait was worth it.
Samardzija gave up one run in 7 2/3 innings and knocked in a career-high three runs, driving the Giants to an easy 8-1 win over the Miami Marlins. The victory snapped a five-game losing streak.
Coming off a sweep by the Diamondbacks, the Giants got off to a quick start. They sent eight batters to the plate in the first inning, scoring three runs on RBIs by Matt Duffy, Brandon Belt and Brandon Crawford.
The lineup put up another three-spot in the fifth, batting around this time. Buster Posey kicked things off with his second single, which was followed by a Belt single and an intentional walk of Crawford that loaded the bases. Samardzija lined an RBI single to right and Angel Pagan and Denard Span drove in runs with singles, giving the Giants a 6-1 lead. Samardzija came up with two more on in the sixth and smoked a double.
Samardzija was even better on the mound, cruising deep into the eighth. He ran into trouble just once, giving up a run in the fourth on three hits. But he got out of that jam with a strikeout and liner to first and then retired 11 of the next 12.
Starting pitching report: Samardzija was brought here in part to eat innings, and he certainly has lived up to his reputation. He’s pitched 27 innings through four starts, posting a 3.00 ERA. He threw 117 pitches Friday, 82 of which were strikes.
Bullpen report: Javier Lopez got to face Giancarlo Stanton. He struck him out.
At the plate: It was an odd night for the “pitcher hitting eighth” experiment. Samardzija stranded five runners in his first two at-bats and then drove in runs in his next two at-bats. He has come up with 13 runners on base in his last two starts, a life most hitters dream of. The three RBI tied his career-high for a season.
In the field: Samardzija got 11 outs on the ground, including all three in the seventh inning. That's generally a good plan when those four guys are playing behind you.
Attendance: The Giants announced a crowd of 41,759 human beings who wore terrible hats, plus one person dressed as an Oompa Loompa.
Up next: Jose Fernandez makes his AT&T Park debut. He's worth the price of admission.