SAN JOSE, Calif. - The San Jose Giants had just enough offense to get past the Stockton Ports on Thursday night at Excite Ballpark. The Giants scored four runs in the bottom of the fourth and two more in the sixth and those proved to be the difference in a 10-8 final that opened a four-game series.
The Ports plated the first two runs of the game in the top of the first but the first one came at a heavy cost. With Nick Allen at second base, Jameson Hannah singled to left-center field. Allen came in to score and had his left leg give out on him as he approached home plate. Despite Allen not touching the plate or being tagged out, the run counted, and Stockton took a 1-0 lead as Allen was carried off the field. Hannah scored two batters later on an RBI single by Lazaro Armenteros to make it a 2-0 contest.
San Jose tied the game in the bottom of the first on a two-out, two-run homer by Courtney Hawinks, who went 4-for-5 on the night and fell a triple shy of hitting for the cycle. San Jose took the lead in the bottom of the second as David Villar led off with a home run and, later in the inning, Manuel Geraldo and Kyle McPherson hit back-to-back doubles to make it a 4-2 contest.
The runs in the second inning were the last allowed by Ports starter James Kaprielian, who did not factor into the decision after going 2 1/3 innings and allowing four runs on five hits while walking one, hitting a batter and striking out one.
Stockton rallied in the top of the third when, with two on and two out, Jonah Bride hit a two-run double to the wall in left-center field to tie the game at 4-4. The Ports took the lead back in the fourth as Mickey McDonald walked and scored two batters later on a double by Jameson Hannah to make it 5-4. It was the last run allowed by Giants starter Jose Marte, who did not factor into the decision after going four innings and allowing seven hits while walking three and striking out seven.
Jared Poche'' (0-5) came on in relief of Kaprielian and finished the third inning and went on to pitch the fourth. Poche' allowed a single and a walk to open the fourth inning and then gave up a two-run double to Brandon Van Horn that vaulted the Giants in front 6-5. Three batters later with two outs, Hawkins doubled to drive in a third run in the inning and Heath Quinn followed with an RBI single to make it an 8-4 Giants lead.
Poche' suffered the loss, going 1 2/3 innings and allowing four runs on four hits while walking two and striking out one.
Stockton took advantage of a pair of San Jose errors to plate a run in the top of the fifth but missed out on more runs when Josh Watson lined into a double play with the bases loaded and one out to end the inning.
San Jose padded its lead in the sixth when, with two on and two out, Villar reached on an error committed by Ports shortstop Jeremy Eierman that allowed a run to score. Dalton Combs followed with an RBI single that stretched the San Jose lead to 10-6. The two runs in the sixth inning were both unearned and the only runs allowed by Will Gilbert in his two innings of work.
Giants reliever Trenton Toplikar (2-1) began working in the fifth and worked into the ninth, where he issued a leadoff walk to Alfonso Rivas and then was lifted for Peter Lannoo. Lannoo, after retiring his first two batters, gave up a two-run homer to Eierman that drew the Ports to within two runs at 10-8. Lannoo would go on to get Bride to ground out to third to end the ballgame and seal the victory for San Jose. Toplikar, who allowed two runs (one earned) on one hit in four-plus innings, notched the win for the Giants.
The Ports and Giants play the second game of their four-game series on Friday night at Excite Ballpark. Brady Feigl (5-3, 2.84 ERA) makes the start for Stockton, opposed by San Jose right-hander Sean Hjelle (2-3, 2.08 ERA). First pitch is set for 7 p.m. PDT.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.