San Francisco’s Darren Ford slid into home to give the Giants a 3-2 win in the 10th inning due to some late-game defensive blunders committed by the Pirates on Tuesday night at PNC Park.
Reliever Joel Hanrahan’s pick-off attempt rolled into right field, advancing Ford to third, who surprised the Pirates by taking off for home on the next at-bat when Neil Walker fielded a ball at first.
“I probably could’ve hard thrown the ball a little harder, but the guy can run,” Walker said. “That guy could be one of the fastest guys in the league. An aggressive play, yes, but maybe (the play was) out of the ordinary for him.”
Their defensive struggles began when Matt Diaz misplayed a ball in right to put Nate Scheirholtz, a pinch-hitter, on with a double. After that, the speedy Ford reached when first baseman Lyle Overbay threw to third to retire Scheirholtz.
With that, the Pirates blew a solid start by Charlie Morton (2-1) who only gave up one earned run over six-plus innings to go with six strikeouts. His outing resulted in a no-decision.
“The mistake that I made last year was dwelling on things,” Morton said. “I’ve really moved on. I’ve watched video and learned from it.”
Pirates outfielder Garrett Jones began the scoring in the second inning with a one-out solo home run that sailed over the wall in right-center field.
In the sixth, the Giants’ Aaron Rowand scored on a sacrifice fly hit to left by Aubrey Huff. He finished the game 2-for-4, including a double.
Then, Lyle Overbay’s RBI single in the bottom of that inning pushed the Pirates ahead, 2-1.
Morton faced two batters in the seventh and was lifted after he gave up a leadoff base hit to Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval and walked Pat Burrell.
Reliever Chris Resop then came in and retired all three of the batters that he faced, including the strikeout of the pitcher Matt Cain, who’d worked him to a full-count.
“It was unbelievable,” Morton said in gratitude of Resop’s work. “He did a great job and has been doing a great job all year.”
Going into Tuesday night’s game, Resop had struck out five of the last nine batters that he saw.
“I had a little more life to my fastball today,” Resop said. “I don’t know if it was adrenaline, or what it was that got me out of the situation, but it was a big situation.”
Hanrahan (0-1) picked up his first loss of the season in the game. Sergio Romo got the win for the Giants. He improved to 1-0.
Malik Vincent can be reached at email@example.com.