DENVER (CBS / AP) — Hunter Pence hit one of San Francisco’s three solo homers and reliever Yusmeiro Petit threw three sharp innings after starter Matt Cain left with a strained right hamstring as the Giants beat the Colorado Rockies 5-1 on Wednesday night.
Pablo Sandoval and Brandon Crawford also connected for the NL West-leading Giants, who won at Coors Field for just the fifth time in 15 games dating back to last season.
Cain didn’t allow a hit through three innings, before giving way to Petit (3-1). He and four other relievers limited the best offensive team in the majors to just five hits.
Jhoulys Chacin (0-3) worked 5 2-3 innings and allowed three runs, including a homer to Pence in the fourth and another to Sandoval two innings later.
Brandon Crawford added a solo shot off Matt Belisle in the seventh as the Giants took the middle contest to even the three-game series. The Rockies have yet to lose a series at home this year.
Trailing 5-0 in the eighth, the Rockies loaded the bases with no outs. Michael Cuddyer sent a grounder up the middle that Crawford tracked down and scooped over to second base with his glove to start a double play.
Troy Tulowitzki then flew out limit the damage to only a run.
The Giants had another pitcher get hurt in the ninth, when reliever Santiago Casilla injured his right leg hustling down the first base line trying to beat out a hit. He fell over the bag and rolled several times on the field. Casilla was helped to the dugout by the trainers and Jeremy Affeldt finished the game.
Cain was settling into a rhythm when Rockies second baseman D.J. LeMahieu sent a sharp comebacker at the right-hander in the third. While the ball appeared to glance off Cain’s glove, the Giants came out to check on him. Cain finished the inning before the bullpen took over.
Earlier this season, Cain missed 13 games after he cut his right index finger while making a ham-and-cheese sandwich in the Giants clubhouse. The cut didn’t require stitches.
Tulowitzki’s torrid hitting at home this season (.521 with eight homers) caught the attention of Giants broadcaster and former major league pitcher Mike Krukow.
“You’re always skeptical — it’s just the way you are as a player,” Krukow said before the game. “He’s hitting as if he’s getting signs. I’m not accusing anybody of anything.”
Still, Rockies manager Walt Weiss had some fun with the assertion his shortstop is somehow stealing signs.
“We have a light bulb on the scoreboard we flash. Keep an eye on Dinger (the team’s mascot), he’s involved,” Weiss said. “We switch out the balls. Got the umpires in on it.
“I love it when other teams talk about that,” Weiss said. “I think it’s great. I think it feeds the beast.”
NOTES: Giants MGR Bruce Bochy said Buster Posey (nerve irritation in lower back) is “doing a lot better” and the catcher could be in the lineup Thursday. … INF Marco Scutaro (strained lower back) had a platelet-rich plasma injection and will take a week off before resuming his rehab. … RHP Tim Hudson (4-2) will take the mound in the series finale on Thursday. The Rockies will throw LHP Jorge De La Rosa (5-3). … OF Carlos Gonzalez left the game as part of a double-switch in the eighth because of inflammation in his left index finger. He’s day to day.
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