A new season, manager and vibe have the Arizona Diamondbacks off to their best start in four years as they got the better of the San Francisco Giants.
Doing it against their NL West rival, a team that had their number at Chase Field all last season, makes it that much sweeter.
Jake Lamb hit a three-run homer and the Diamondbacks beat San Francisco 9-3 on Thursday night to win a four-game series over the Giants at Chase Field for the first time in nine years.
"At the end of the day, you win a game like today, a series against the Giants, it's well deserved. It's earned," Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo said. "It's a great way to start the season."
The Diamondbacks needed seven tries to win a home series in 2016 but are 3-1 for the first time since 2013 in Lovullo's first season as manager. And they did it against the Giants, who won nine of 10 in the desert last year.
David Peralta and Paul Goldschmidt each hit solo homers off Jeff Samardzija (0-1), and Peralta and A.J. Pollock each had two RBIs.
Jorge De La Rosa (1-0) got one out and walked two after replacing Robbie Ray in the sixth inning to start off a strong night by Arizona's bullpen.
The Giants took an early 2-0 lead only to go flat as Arizona raced away from them. Aaron Hill hit a solo homer and San Francisco had four hits to open a season 1-3 for the first time since 2012.
"We've done a good job here in the past. It's disappointing," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.
Samardzija struck out five over the first two innings but gave up consecutive opposite-field homers in the fourth: Peralta to left, Goldschmidt to right. Goldschmidt's was career hit No. 848 , passing Steve Finley for second on Arizona's career list. He has a ways to go for No. 1, though — Luis Gonzalez had 1,337.
Lamb put Arizona up 5-3 with his three-run homer in the sixth inning.
Samardzija allowed six runs and eight hits and struck out nine in 5 1/3 innings.
"Those are tough ones right there," Samardzija said. "When you don't have good stuff and it doesn't go your way, you know what you need to work on. But when you have your stuff and it ends up like that, you kind of go back and dissect a couple of pitches in the game that made the difference."
Ray retired the first seven batters until Hill hit a belt-high pitch over the plate well over the wall in left for his first homer. Brandon Crawford had a run-scoring single off Ray in the fourth inning, and Buster Posey chased him with a run-scoring double that put the Giants up 3-2 in the sixth.
Ray allowed three runs and three hits and struck out six in 5 2/3 innings.
The Diamondbacks will follow the lead of the Colorado Rockies and add a humidor at Chase Field.
Diamondbacks President and CEO Derrick Hall told Arizona Sports 98.7 FM that the team hopes to have it in place in about a month to help with pitchers' grip on the balls.
Colorado installed a humidor in 2002 and is the only team in MLB with one.
DODGE AND TOSS
Arizona's Randall Delgado had to do a little dodging in the seventh inning when a broken bat flew over his head as he tried to field the ball. The right-hander managed to avoid the shard from Gorkys Hernandez's bat and throw him out at first.
RHP Shelby Miller makes his first start of the season when Arizona kicks off a three-game series against the Cleveland Indians. Miller went 3-12 with a 6.15 ERA in his first season with the Diamondbacks in 2016.
Thursday's MLB Results:
New York Mets 6-2 Atlanta Braves
Tampa Bay Rays 2-5 Toronto Blue Jays
Houston Astros 2-4 Seattle Mariners
Arizona Diamondbacks 9-3 San Francisco Giants