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Dubon flashes glove, bat in debut as Giants fall to Padres in series opener

A late rally by the San Francisco Giants was not enough, as they fell 5-3 to the San Diego Padres (62-71) Thursday night to open the four-game home series.

This story has been updated with quotes and post-game material from the Giants clubhouse at Oracle Park.

However, the game was special for rookie second baseman Mauricio Dubon, who made his debut as a Giant by contributing on both sides of the ball. Dubon said:

“The first inning, I look to my right, I saw [Crawford and Longoria] and it’s unreal. I look to my left I saw Belt. And then I look down, and I’m like ‘oh, there’s me.’ It was pretty special, sharing the infield with them.”

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The game was also the first of 18 consecutive games for the Giants (65-68), their second-longest stretch of the season.

This story will be updated with quotes and post-game material from the Giants clubhouse at Oracle Park.

The Giants contained the Padres early with the help of flashy defensive plays by a pair of rookies. In the top of the second inning, Dubon dived to reach a ground ball, got to his feet and threw to first base for the out.

Right fielder Mike Yastrezemski followed up by making a diving catch for the third out. Starting righthander Dereck Rodríguez (5-6, 5.26 ERA) said:

“Everybody knows about [Dubon’s] glove and it was nice for the fans to see that. [Yastrzemski’s] play saved me.”

However, the Padres recorded eight hits in the first four innings on Rodriguez while jumping to a commanding 5-0 lead. Bruce Bochy said:

“Some mislocated fastballs that left the park. He just missed some spots there … At times he was really good, but in this game, you make some mistakes, it leaves the park, there’s damage and you saw what happened.”

In the top of the third inning, Manuel Margot belted a two run home run (11) to left center field to put the Padres ahead 2-0. Josh Naylor followed up with a double. While Rodriguez got his first strikeout of the night on Manny Machado, Eric Hosmer hit an RBI double to bring in Naylor.

In the top of the fourth, Luis Urias’ first career triple was followed up by Austin Hedges’ home run (10) to extend the Padres lead to 5-0. 

First baseman Brandon Belt put the Giants on the scoreboard with a solo home run (10) to cut the Padres lead to 5-1 in the bottom of the fourth. 

Consecutive groundouts to Padres big-hitters Naylor, Machado and Hosmer in the top of the fifth marked the first inning where the Padres did not record a hit.

The Giants looked to build on that momentum in the bottom of the fifth. Dubon followed up centerfielder Kevin Pillar’s single with a deep single to right field. Dubon’s first major league hit allowed Pillar to reach third. However, the Giants were unable to capitalize and left both runners on base. Dubon said:

“It was crazy. Coming here, too … to be able to get [my first hit] here, it was pretty special.”

Starting in the top of the sixth inning, relievers Jandel Gustave, Fernando Abad, and Sam Coonrod combined to hold the Padres to zero hits through the final four innings.

The Giants seemed to gain momentum in the bottom of the eighth inning, when pinch hitters Donovan Solano and Joey Rickard both singled with zero outs. Belt was walked to load the bases. While third baseman Evan Longoria grounded into a double play, Rickard reached third and Solano scored to bring the Padres lead down to 5-2. Rickard was left stranded when leftfielder Alex Dickerson lined out.

Padres reliever Andres Munoz struckout catcher Buster Posey and Pillar to start the bottom of the ninth inning. Shortstop Brandon Crawford was walked, advanced to second on a wild pitch and then reached home after pinch hitter Steven Vogt doubled on a line drive. Solano grounded out to end the game, 5-3 for the Padres.

Padres starting righthander Chris Paddack (8-7 3.84 ERA) struck out eight batters through seven innings.

Up Next

The four-game series continues Friday night. Left-hander Madison Bumgarner (8-8, 3.71 ERA) starts against right-hander Dinelson Lamet (2-2, 4.30 ERA).

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