Pinch-hitters Joaquin Arias and Hector Sanchez delivered run-scoring hits in the ninth inning as the National League West-leading Giants rallied for their season-high-tying fourth straight road victory, a 3-2 decision over the Houston Astros on Tuesday.
After Houston took a 2-1 lead in the eighth on a wild pitch by Matt Cain, the Giants took advantage of Houston’s weak bullpen to get their six-game road trip off to a good start. Brandon Belt led off the ninth with a single off Wesley Wright and scored when Arias ripped a double down the third-base line off Wilton Lopez (5-3).
Lopez struck out Brandon Crawford, but Sanchez followed with a single that plated Arias for a 3-2 advantage. San Francisco had been 0-for-11 with runners in scoring position prior to Sanchez’s hit.
Santiago Casilla (5-5) recorded the final two outs of the eighth and Sergio Romo worked a perfect ninth for his seventh save.
The game was scoreless until Angel Pagan deposited a 1-1 offering from Bud Norris into the seats in right field with two outs and none on in the top of the fifth. Houston answered quickly as Fernando Martinez led off the bottom of the inning with an upper-deck shot off Cain.
Brett Wallace collected three of the six hits by the Astros, who have lost 10 of 12 overall and 16 of 19 at home.
The Giants’ comeback spoiled a solid outing for Norris, who had to leave in the seventh inning with a blister on his finger.
Norris, who is in the midst of a 10-game losing streak, allowed six hits and one earned run while striking out seven in 6²⁄³ innings.
NOTES: San Francisco third baseman Pablo Sandoval and shortstop Crawford teamed up to record the final out of the first inning. Sandoval chased down Castro’s foul pop and made a diving attempt to catch it. As he fell, Sandoval knocked the ball back into the air and Crawford made a diving catch to end the frame. ... Astros outfielder Justin Maxwell, who has not started since Aug. 21 due to a bruised right index finger, will attempt to swing a bat today.