SAN FRANCISCO — The one pitch that left the ballpark was the one pitch Madison Bumgarner located exactly where he wanted.
That's the way things have been going for San Francisco this year. Even when its ace pitcher has a good game, the Giants fins a way to lose.
Bumgarner threw a slider in to Clint Barmes, who was looking in, and the ball landed over the left field fence for a three-run home run in the seventh inning as the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Giants 3-1 on Friday night for their fourth win in five games.
Bumgarner (11-8) pitched at least seven innings for the 16th time, little consolation to a team that has fallen – hard – from the top.
"We all want to win," Bumgarner said. "With runners on, all you want is to minimize the damage. It didn't happen right there."
Bumgarner took a shutout into the seventh and had not allowed more than one runner to reach base in any of the first six innings.
That all changed in the seventh, when Gaby Sanchez and Josh Harrison each singled to lead off the inning.
"You can't really give that team a lot of runs to work with," Bumgarner said. "It seemed like they were making adjustments. That's why they are where they are. There is no one way to beat them."
After Neil Walker sacrificed both runners along, Barmes came to the plate looking to get at least the tying run home. Instead he ruined Bumgarner's night.
"I thought I made a good pitch," Bumgarner said. "It was pretty much where I wanted it. He just made an adjustment."
Something that Barmes confirmed.
"I was looking to stay inside," he said. "I saw the slider pretty well. It was a pretty good pitch but I was able to drop the barrel on it and stay inside of it."
Roger Kieschnick drove in the lone run for the Giants, who lost their third straight and five of six overall. Hunter Pence added a pair of hits.
The Giants took the early lead in the fourth. Buster Posey hit a one-out double and advanced to third on a wild pitch. He scored when Kieschnick's blooper fell safely in short left field.
The Giants had runners on in each of the first four innings. Following Kieschnick's RBI single, Morton retired 12 of the next 13 before giving up a double to Brandon Crawford with two outs in the eighth.
Tony Watson entered the game and struck out Brandon Belt to end the inning.
Bumgarner retired 14 of 16 before giving up consecutive singles to Sanchez and Harrison ahead of Barmes' three-run shot in the seventh.
NOTES: RHP Tim Lincecum (6-13, 4.53) goes for the Giants on Saturday. ... RHP Yusmeiro Petit was recalled from Triple-A Fresno to replace Giants RHP Matt Cain, who went on the DL. The Giants also recalled LHP Mike Kickham and optioned IF Nick Noonan. ... Giants LHP Jeremy Affeldt (groin strain) is close to resuming baseball activities and could return to the bullpen Sept. 1. ... Giants OF Angel Pagan (left hamstring surgery) had his rehab transferred to Fresno from the Arizona Rookie League.