- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 7, 2015

PHOENIX (AP) - New manager Chip Hale said before the season - and any chance he had - that Arizona would be a scrappy team that fights to the finish in every game.

He was right about the Diamondbacks in their season opener, even if it did end up a loss.

Pinch-hitter Jake Lamb hit a three-run double in the eighth inning, but Arizona couldn’t tack on another run in a 5-4 loss to the defending World Series champion San Francisco Giants on Monday night.

“They showed a lot of fight,” Hale said after his first game as a major league manager. “That was great to come back.”

The Diamondbacks struggled early against Madison Bumgarner (1-0), last year’s NLCS and World Series MVP. Despite struggling in the spring, he was sharp once the season started, allowing a run on six hits.

San Francisco’s offense was on track, too, despite losing power-hitting Pablo Sandoval during the offseason and right fielder Hunter Pence to a broken arm that will keep him out early this year.

Sparked by the top of the order - Nori Aoki, Joe Panik and Angel Pagan - San Francisco had 10 hits in four-plus innings against Josh Collmenter (0-1) to build a four-run lead.

Panik had three hits, Pagan had a pair of run-scoring singles and Aoki added two hits. Brandon Crawford chipped in with a two-run double in the fifth.

The Diamondbacks made it interesting after Bumgarner left.

They loaded the bases against Javier Lopez and Jean Machi in the eighth inning, and Lamb hit his three-run double off Sergio Romo to cut San Francisco’s lead to 5-4. But Jeremy Affeldt struck out pinch-hitter David Peralta, and Arizona wasn’t able to hit anything hard against Santiago Casilla, who worked a perfect ninth for the save.

“That is why they are the champions,” Hale said. “They didn’t look very good this spring, but they don’t have to worry about spring training.”

Bumgarner had one of the best postseason runs in major league history last year, earning two wins in the World Series and a five-inning save in Game 7 on two days’ rest.

The left-hander wasn’t exactly sharp in spring training, going 0-3 with a 3.70 ERA, but said he felt good and would be ready for the start of the season.

He was right.

Bumgarner left a pitch up in the third inning to Mark Trumbo, who hit a run-scoring triple that nearly went out in the deepest part of the park.

Other than that, Bumgarner had the Diamondbacks under control, aided by double plays in the fifth and sixth.

“I don’t know what else we can say about him,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “This guy’s special; first start goes out there and throws a terrific game.”

Collmenter has been Arizona’s jack-of-all trades during his four seasons in the desert, filling in wherever the Diamondbacks needed him, whether it was as a starter or long relief.

The over-the-top-throwing right-hander was rewarded for his workmanlike efforts by getting the ball on opening day.

Aoki, Panik and Pagan greeted him with one hit after another, going a combined 8 for 9 through the first five innings.

Pagan had a pair of run-scoring singles, Buster Posey hit a sacrifice fly and Crawford a two-run double in the fifth to put San Francisco up 5-1.

Collmenter allowed five runs in 4 2-3 innings.

“For me to be successful I have to throw fastballs where I want them to be,” Collmenter said. “I was throwing them all over the place. I got behind in some counts. I threw some pitches that they could put the bat on and they did that sometimes.”

TRAINER’S ROOM

Giants: Pence, who could be out a few more weeks with a broken forearm, had played 383 straight games - the longest active streak in the majors.

Diamondbacks: Arizona opened the season with two starting pitchers on the DL: Patrick Corbin and Bronson Arroyo, who are both recovering from Tommy John surgery last season.

UP NEXT

Giants: Right-hander Ryan Vogelsong was moved up to start Tuesday night against the Diamondbacks in place of Jake Peavy, who struggled with a “dead arm” in his final three spring starts. Peavy is expected back in the rotation for the next series against San Diego later this week.

Diamondbacks: Right-hander Rubby De La Rosa will make his Arizona debut against the Giants after the Diamondbacks acquired him in an offseason trade that sent left-hander Wade Miley to Boston. De La Rosa was 4-8 with a 4.43 ERA in 18 starts with the Red Sox in 2014.

LOAD COMMENTS ()

 

Click to Read More

Click to Hide