Posey's first homer contributes to Zito’s rebound win 

click to enlarge Giants catcher and 2012 NL MVP Buster Posey broke through with his first home run of the year, contributing to a three-game sweep of the Padres. - BEN MARGOT/AP
  • Ben Margot/AP
  • Giants catcher and 2012 NL MVP Buster Posey broke through with his first home run of the year, contributing to a three-game sweep of the Padres.

Barry Zito shook off the worst outing of his big-league career to give the Giants another impressive effort from their starting rotation.

Buster Posey’s first home run of the season made sure it held up.

Zito and Chad Gaudin combined on a six-hitter and the Giants beat the San Diego Padres 5-0 on Sunday to complete a three-game sweep.

Zito (3-1) bounced back five days after getting shelled by the Milwaukee Brewers when he failed to make it out of the third inning.

Against the Padres, he allowed five hits in seven innings, struck out four, walked one and did not give up a run for the third time in four starts.

“If you let outings bleed into the next one, that’s when things kind of go bad, so you just have to stick with your approach,” Zito said after beating San Diego for the first time in nearly two years. “I felt pretty good in my game and the results weren’t there last [time]. I felt pretty good today and the results were there. That’s just the nature of the game.”

Zito’s outing followed gems by San Francisco starters Madison Bumgarner and Tim Lincecum, and helped the Giants sweep the Padres in a series of three games or more for the first time since Sept. 12-14, 2011.

San Diego, held scoreless for the last 21 innings, had opened its six-game trip by taking three straight from the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Zito retired 13 of his final 16 batters before leaving to a standing ovation after fanning Will Venable to end the seventh.

He had given up nine runs in 2²?³ innings during Tuesday’s 10-8 defeat at Milwaukee, ending his streak of 16 starts without a loss.

“Good for Z,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “It was a great job on Barry’s part of bouncing back. You have to be resilient in this game. He had good command today and made his pitches.”

Gaudin allowed one hit over the final two innings to complete the Giants’ second straight shutout.

Posey’s first home run of the season was just the 11th this year for the power-starved Giants. Before the two-out, two-run drive off Eric Stults (2-2) in the fifth, Hunter Pence, Pablo Sandoval and Brandon Crawford had accounted for all of San Francisco’s homers.

NOTES: Padres outfielder Carlos Quentin has been working out at Petco Field while serving his eight-game suspension for charging Dodgers pitcher Zack Greinke. ... Padres left-hander Clayton Richard, who was scratched from Saturday’s game with flu-like symptoms, is scheduled to make his next start Tuesday. ... Giants right-hander Ryan Vogelsong (1-1) pitches the series opener against Arizona today.

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