Hughes (0-1) came in relief in the sixth and allowed three runs, two of which came from a Joe Panik double that tipped the glove of Gregory Polanco. Polanco was playing left for Starling Marte, who was out of the lineup with left foot discomfort.
“It was unacceptable execution overall,” Hughes said. “Falling behind in the count and then I left a couple crucial pitches over the plate and they hit the mistakes.”
Polanco said afterwards that he could have made the catch. Even if he did, it would have been long enough to be a game-tying sacrifice fly. He ended his night 3-5 with a home run, three RBI and two runs.
Liriano was shaky in his five innings, allowing four runs on six hits and three walks.
“We had to work out of the stretch, which complicated some things,” Clint Hurdle said. “The stuff was good out of the windup.”
Samardzija was pulled after three innings of six run ball, allowing a home run in every frame. John Jaso opened the scoring on the first pitch of the game with a home run to right-center. Polanco and Jung-Ho Kang also went yard in the second and third and Matt Joyce added an RBI single in the first inning.
That’s where the offense stopped. The Giants’ used five relievers over six scoreless innings, leaving runners in scoring position in the fifth, sixth and seventh.
“We scored six quick and were pretty much just stopped,” Hurdle said.
Jordy Mercer gave the Pirates life in the bottom of the ninth with a pinch-hit infield single, but Jaso hit into a fielder’s choice and was a victim of a strike ‘em out, throw ‘em out double play with Polanco to end the game. Santiago Casilla picked up his 15th save.
The Pirates and Giants will conclude their four game series Thursday at 12;35 p.m.. Jon Niese (6-4, 4.74) will square off against Albert Suarez (2-1, 3.69).
1. McCutchen is 0-20 with two walks in the first inning since May 29.
2. Joyce is batting .438 (7-16) with 13 RBI with runners in scoring position and two outs.
3. Liriano has a wRC+ of 79 this season. Madison Bumgarner’s wRC+ is 54.