STOCKTON - Devin Harris hit a two-run homer in the top of the fourth inning before Jeff Arnold smacked a three-run home run in the seventh to lead the San Jose Giants to an 8-2 victory over the Stockton Ports on Monday evening at Banner Island Ballpark. San Jose claimed their third straight win and improved their record to 4-1.
Harris (1-for-3, HR, 2 RBI) and Arnold (1-for-1, HR, 3 RBI) connected for their second and first home runs of the season respectively while Ryan Cavan (2-for-5, 2B, RBI) added a pair of hits to pace the Giants offensively.
Jorge Bucardo (2-0) was credited with the win out of the bullpen after tossing 2 1/3 scoreless innings. Bucardo surrendered just one hit with two walks and one strikeout during his stint on the mound. San Jose starter Chris Marlowe worked the first 4 2/3 innings yielding just one run on three hits. Marlowe, who was making his California League debut, walked five and struck out four.
The game was scoreless until the top of the fourth inning when Elliott Blair started a rally with a one-out single. Blair later moved to second on a wild pitch and then with two outs, Harris blasted a home run to deep left center for a 2-0 Giants advantage.
After the Harris homer, Ydwin Villegas singled before Arnold walked. Villegas then advanced to third base on the second wild pitch of the inning and scored when the next batter, Chris Lofton, reached on a fielding error committed by shortstop Wade Kirkland.
The Ports were held hitless over the first three innings by Marlowe before breaking through with a run in the bottom of the fourth. Max Muncy's wind-blown pop-up was dropped on the infield to start the rally. Muncy was credited with a single before Tony Thompson singled to put runners on the corners. B.A. Vollmuth then delivered a sacrifice fly to plate Muncy with the first Stockton run of the night.
Marlowe issued consecutive walks to the next two hitters to load the bases, but escaped further damage when Kirkland grounded out to end the inning.
San Jose immediately got the run back in the top of the fifth as Angel Villalona walked with one out before Cavan singled with two outs. After a walk to Harris loaded the bases, Stockton reliever T.J. Walz uncorked a wild pitch allowing Villalona to score for a 4-1 Giants advantage.
In the bottom of the fifth, Marlowe surrendered a one-out single and issued a two-out walk as the Ports brought the potential tying run to the plate, however Bucardo entered the game and promptly retired Thompson on a groundout to end the threat.
After Bucardo stranded two runners in scoring position in the bottom of the sixth, the Giants pushed across four runs in the seventh to extend their lead to 8-1. Blair's one-out walk started the rally before Cavan hammered an RBI double off the fence in deep right center. Then after Harris walked and Villegas flied out, Arnold launched a three-run homer to center to make it 8-1.
Bucardo returned to the mound in the bottom of the seventh and kept Stockton off the scoreboard before Luis Rojas (2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 0 BB, 0 SO) pitched the last two innings for the Giants. The Ports scored a single run in the eighth on Bobby Crocker's one-out RBI double, but wouldn't get any closer.
Stockton starter Andres Avila (0-1) suffered the loss after allowing three runs (two earned) on four hits over four innings. He walked one and struck out three.
Notes: Monday was the opener of a three-game series and the first of 27 meetings between the Giants and the Ports this season … Both teams finished with seven hits … Cavan has hit safely in all five games this season … Stockton (4-1) suffered their first loss of the year … Bucardo has picked-up the win in his last two relief appearances … The Ports were 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left 12 on base … San Jose won despite the top three hitters in the lineup combining to go 0-for-14 … Mac Williamson left the game in the bottom of the third after making a diving catch of Kirkland's shallow fly ball … He walked off the field on his own … The Giants have allowed just eight runs over their last four games.
On Deck: The Giants and Ports continue their three-game series on Tuesday evening with first pitch at Banner Island Ballpark scheduled for 7:05 PM. Adalberto Mejia (0-0, 0.00 ERA) is slated to start on the mound for San Jose while Stockton is expected to counter with Drew Granier (1-0, 3.60 ERA). The game can be heard live on sjgiants.com with coverage beginning at 6:35 PM.