SAN FRANCISCO -- Their lavish weekend of 2012 celebratory pomp finally over, the Giants got back to more mundane business Monday night -- simply celebrating victories.
Madison Bumgarner and three relievers made Hunter Pence's three-run homer in the first inning stand up for an eventual 4-2 victory over the surprising Colorado Rockies at AT&T Park.
After his team lost two out of three to the St. Louis Cardinals over the weekend, Giants manager Bruce Bochy wasn't the only person hoping things would get back to normal without all the hoopla surrounding last year's successes distracting them.
"We definitely did enjoy the weekend celebration," said Buster Posey, who drove in his first run of 2013 with an eighth-inning single. "But I think most baseball players are creatures of habit, and we do enjoy the normal routines."
Added reliever Jeremy Affeldt, who pitched a perfect eighth against the heart of the Rockies order: "You have to do the celebrations -- the flag, and then the ring. That's great and all, but it can take away from the focus of what you're trying to do, and that's play baseball. It's just natural -- you're not 100 percent locked into the game."
To be sure, the Giants needed to be locked in against a Rockies team that was off to a 5-1 start in the National League West, and, for the most part, they were.
Things got off to a good start in the first inning when Marco Scutaro and Pablo Sandoval singled in front of Pence's third home run of the season, a mammoth two-out blast to left field off Rockies left-hander Jorge De La Rosa that staked Bumgarner to a 3-0 lead.
Bumgarner labored through 52/3 innings, however. He gave up a solo homer to Carlos Gonzalez in the third that cut the lead to 3-1 and had base runners on in every inning after the first. He uncharacteristically walked five (one intentional) and allowed five hits before being lifted with two outs in the sixth after Chris Nelson drove home Michael Cuddyer with a single to left that made the score 3-2.
"Buster did a good job calling pitches, but I didn't do as good a job executing," Bumgarner said. "I made a few mental mistakes. But physically I felt good and competed, and that's all you can do."
The Giants bullpen was more than up to the task of preserving Bumgarner's second win in two starts. Santiago Casilla got the last out of the sixth and pitched a 1-2-3 seventh. Affeldt then blew through the eighth, striking out Gonzalez to lead off the inning, retiring Troy Tulowitzki on a groundout to second and then getting Cuddyer, who had singled twice and walked, on a meek pop fly to right.
After Posey drove home the insurance run in the bottom half of the eighth, Sergio Romo finished things off with his fourth save of the year. He gave up a leadoff double to Josh Rutledge, then struck out Nelson, Todd Helton and Wilin Rosario in succession to end the game.
"I'm getting good pitches to hit, it's just that my swing is not there right now," Scutaro said before the game. He went 1 for 4 with a line-drive single to left in his first at-bat and came around to score his first run of the season on Pence's homer.
Scutaro entered the game 2 for 23 and was hitless in four of the first six games after a 2012 season in which he went hitless in only nine of 61 games he played after being traded to San Francisco by the Rockies on July 27. He hit .362 for the Giants.
"I was fine in spring, I just lost the feeling," Scutaro said. "But it'll come sooner or later. You just keep playing, keep fighting. That's why hitting is so hard."
Colorado (Juan Nicasio 1-0) at Giants (Tim Lincecum 1-0), 7:15 p.m. CSN-Plus
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