Brad Penny is back in a pennant race in the familiar NL West and he’s making his mark for everybody to see – and hear.
The pumped-up Penny dazzled in his home debut and endeared himself with the crowd by showing some emotion, Juan Uribe homered twice, tripled and drove in five runs and the San Francisco Giants beat the San Diego Padres 9-4 on Monday.
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Penny struck out six and walked one over seven sharp innings in his first start at AT&T Park. He won at Philadelphia in impressive fashion Wednesday, two days after he signed with the Giants following his release by Boston.
Adrian Gonzalez hit a towering solo home run off Penny in the sixth, the slugger’s second in as many games and No. 36 this year.
Gonzalez admired his drive to dead center before starting a slow trot. Penny took issue with that and began yelling toward Gonzalez as he made his way to home. The umpires rushed out and so did San Francisco skipper Bruce Bochy.
“I got a little carried away,” Penny said. “I was excited and I was having fun out there. I’m someone who wears my emotions on my sleeve. … I was fired up. They were talking. It’s not a one-way street. If I get caught up in it, I do it.”
Two batters later, Penny pumped both arms in the direction of San Diego’s dugout after a called third strike to Will Venable ended the inning.
Penny’s teammates have quickly come to appreciate his spirit, not to mention his mammoth mound presence.
“He was yelling,” catcher Bengie Molina said. “I think the whole stadium heard it.”
Uribe and Edgar Renteria hit back-to-back home runs in the third, helping the Giants remain two games back of the Rockies in the NL wild-card race. Colorado beat Cincinnati.
Penny (2-0) didn’t give up a hit until Venable’s triple leading off the fifth. The Padres certainly didn’t want a repeat of Jonathan Sanchez‘s improbable no-hitter against them here on July 10.
After the home run, Penny retired the final five batters he faced.
“He popped off after Adrian’s home run. I don’t know why,” San Diego manager Bud Black said. “Adrian did the same thing 36 times running around the bases. I don’t know why but he gave our dugout some kind of gesture.”
When Bochy ran out to calm Penny, he told the pitcher to keep his composure because he needed him to stay in the game.
“He pitches with a lot of emotion,” Bochy said. “It probably got away from him a little bit. He’s intense.”
Penny previously pitched for the Dodgers, and enjoyed the crowd response.
“This is the first time I’ve been to San Francisco and not been booed,” he said.
Uribe tripled to start the second and scored on a wild pitch by Clayton Richard (4-2) to put the Giants ahead, then homered in the team’s five-run third. After Uribe’s two-run shot, Renteria gave San Francisco its fifth set of consecutive home runs this season.
Uribe hit a three-run shot in the seventh for his eighth career multihomer game.
Nick Hundley hit a two-run homer off Alex Hinshaw with two outs in the ninth for the Padres.
Pablo Sandoval and Molina also drove in runs for the Giants, who started off a key homestand against the division. The first-place Dodgers come to town this weekend followed by the Rockies early next week. In all, San Francisco is in a stretch with 21 of 25 games against NL West foes – more remaining against the division than both the Dodgers and Rockies.
San Francisco bounced back after losing 2-1 in 12 innings Sunday at Milwaukee on Prince Fielder‘s game-ending homer.
Freddy Sanchez had a pair of singles for the Giants in his return from the disabled list after missing 19 games with a strained left shoulder.
With Sanchez back at second base, Uribe moved to third base and Sandoval to first – a lineup Bochy says he may stick with for a while. Uribe has been hitting so well Bochy said he can’t afford not to keep him in there.
Padres leadoff man Everth Cabrera had an error reversed to a hit in his last at-bat in Los Angeles Sunday night, and then had a hit taken away in his first at-bat Monday.
“That is ironic,” Black said. “Back-to-back at-bats like that especially coming in Los Angeles and then San Francisco. What are the chances of that? It doesn’t happen often.”
Uribe, 0 for 5 on Sunday, last had a two-homer game on Sept. 5, 2008, against the Angels while with the White Sox. He also had a career-best of 11 total bases Monday. … San Diego hasn’t announced a starter for Friday’s home game with Colorado, though RHP Tim Stauffer is one candidate and he’d be on regular rest. The Padres are considering giving their starters an extra day this time through the rotation.