- Associated Press - Thursday, September 11, 2014

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Jake Peavy brings an all-out intensity to the San Francisco Giants that manager Bruce Bochy considers perfect for the September push. The veteran pitcher only wishes he could face the Los Angeles Dodgers this weekend.

Peavy did his part to put San Francisco in prime position heading into the key series, striking out eight without walking a batter to win his third start in a row in the Giants’ 6-2 victory against the Arizona Diamondbacks on Thursday.

San Francisco, which leads the NL wild-card standings, pulled within two games of the idle Dodgers a day before a key weekend series against the NL West leaders at AT&T; Park.

“There’s nobody in this clubhouse who believes we can’t get it done. There’s a championship pedigree around here,” Peavy said. “Over the past few weeks, we’ve found some identity.”

Hunter Pence put the Giants ahead on a quirky RBI single in the first. Pence literally threw his bat at the ball, which hit the front corner of second base and skipped into shallow right-center. Pence also drew a bases-loaded walk in his team’s season-best ninth straight home win.

“Everybody was kind of laughing,” said Juan Perez, who came off the bench to add an RBI double. “You don’t see that every time.”

Buster Posey had a more traditional RBI single among his three hits, helping the Giants extend their season-best home winning streak. It’s their longest unbeaten run at AT&T; Park since nine in a row in May 2011.

Peavy (5-4) walked off to a standing ovation in the sixth after allowing Mark Trumbo’s RBI double. The right-hander is 5-1 with a 1.12 ERA over his last six starts, finally getting ample run support. Peavy allowed six hits in all over 5 2-3 innings, and has been an important addition since his trade from the Red Sox on July 26.

Jake Lamb homered against Santiago Casilla in the ninth, but Arizona matched its season-high losing streak at six games.

“If you’re not hitting, you have to play better, and we didn’t do that,” center fielder A.J. Pollock said. “They had a couple of hits I’m still scratching my head how they got. But they are believing in it right now and have a lot of positive vibes going.”

After Pence’s earlier bloop, Brandon Crawford hit a single that barely fell in down the line. Left fielder Alfredo Marte tried to catch the ball, stumbled over the bullpen mound and lost his glove. Crawford advanced on the error.

The Giants swept Arizona at home for the first time since May 2011. San Francisco plays all of its remaining games against division opponents.

Randall Delgado (3-4) was tagged for three runs and seven hits in four innings, making just his second start since April 10. He spent most of the season as a reliever.

Arizona’s starting pitchers have allowed three or fewer runs in 14 straight games.

The Giants have outscored opponents 58-14 during their home winning streak.


Diamondbacks: The D-backs were hopeful rookie OF David Peralta could return Friday from a back injury but manager Kirk Gibson indicated it could be a few more days. Peralta, who hasn’t played since Sept. 5, is scheduled for an MRI exam Friday.

Giants: OF-1B Michael Morse took dry swings as he works back from a left oblique strain that has forced him to miss the last nine games. “He’s about 50 percent right now,” Bochy said. “He’s, my guess, two to three days away.”


Bochy’s pitching son, Brett, is yet to make his major league debut since joining the club as a September call-up. A few more runs on the board and he might have had his chance.

“I have guys who need some work,” the manager said. “I’ll get him in at some point. He gets it. He’s been around the game a long time.”


Diamondbacks: LHP Vidal Nuno (0-5, 3.16) tries again for his first victory since joining Arizona from the New York Yankees, when the D-backs open a six-game homestand by hosting the San Diego Padres. Nuno’s last win came June 27 against the Red Sox. He has allowed two runs or fewer in his last five starts.

Giants: LHP Madison Bumgarner (17-9, 3.02) pitches the opener against the Dodgers, looking to build on his already career-best wins. One strikeout will give Bumgarner 200 in a season for the first time in his career.

SELIG VISIT: Commissioner Bud Selig stopped at AT&T; Park and toured the new edible garden in center field as part of his farewell ballpark tour. He said he is 18 ballparks into his schedule, with four or five more upcoming stops on the calendar and more in the playoffs.

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