On a rainy Easter Sunday at AT&T Park, early offensive fireworks gave way to a pitchers’ duel, as Antonio Senzatela and Jeff Samardzija both recovered from rough first innings to go seven apiece. In the end, the Rockies won by the same score they led by after the top of the second inning.
The Rockies jumped on Samardzija immediately in the top of the first. Charlie Blackmon led off the game with a home run, his third of the season. DJ LeMahieu and Carlos Gonzalez followed with a single and a double, and Nolan Arenado celebrated his 26th birthday by knocking both of them in with a double of his own. Before Samardzija recorded an out, the Rockies were up 3-0. The Giants starter settled down and got out of the inning without any further harm.
The Giants wasted no time inflicting similar damage on the rookie Senzatela; scoring three runs of their own in the bottom of the first, including a sacrifice fly by ex-Rockie Nick Hundley.
It looked like it might be a very long afternoon of baseball, but both starters cruised through the rest of their outings. Samardzija gave up another run in the top of the second on a DJ LeMahieu single that scored Tony Wolters, but he pitched through the end of the seventh without allowing another Rockies run.
Senzatela was nearly dominant in the rest of his seven-plus innings; allowing just four hits from the second inning on. In total he gave up three runs on seven hits. He struck out three and didn’t allow a walk. He threw 94 pitches; 60 of them for strikes, before he was taken out after allowing a lead-off single to start the eighth inning.
The three runs were the most Senzatela has allowed in his first three starts, but he was able to give the Rockies good length once again, and he handled his first real battle with adversity at the big league level with ease.
Mike Dunn and Adam Ottavino worked the rest of the eighth without incident, and Greg Holland shut down the Giants in the ninth to earn his seventh save in as many opportunities. The last out of the game proved spectacular, as Carlos Gonzalez made a diving catch on a sinking line drive off the bat of Eduardo Nunez.
The Rockies have finally reached their first off day of the season after going 9-5 in their first fourteen games, including 6-2 on the road. They play next at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday night at 8:10 Mountain Time.