Bryan Reynolds lined a single to center to drive in Elias Diaz in a four run ninth inning that propelled the Pirates to a come from behind victory.
Pittsburgh trailed 4-2 into the ninth when pinch-hitter Kevin Kramer singled on a ground ball past the mound, beating the throw from Giants’ shortstop Brandon Crawford. Left-hander Fernando Abad came on to face Cole Tucker and got him to ground to third, advancing Kramer to second, but he wasn’t anywhere close to the plate on pinch-hitter Josh Bell, walking him on five pitches. Elias Diaz, the third pinch-hitter of the inning, then drove a 2-2 pitch deep to left where it appeared that Mike Yastrzemski had a play, but the ball dropped off his glove onto the warning track. Kramer saw the play well and was racing home when third base coach Alex Cora put up the stop sign, apparently forgetting that there were two runner behind Kramer, as both Bell and Diaz found themselves heading into second base from opposite directions. Fortunately for the Pirates, first baseman Brandon Belt was too close to second when he took the throw and Diaz was able to beat Belt back to first base, loading the bases with one out.
Giants’ manager Bruce Bochy then went to the bullpen again, bringing on hard throwing right-hander Jandel Gustave, but Kevin Newman greeted him with a line single to right that drove in a pair to tie the game.
Reynolds then fouled off two full count pitches before stroking his line drive single to center to drive in Diaz with the go ahead run.
The Giants thought they might get out of the inning when Melky Cabrera smacked a hot shot to shortstop, but on review it was decided that second baseman Mauricio Dubron had dropped the throw from Crawford before stepping on the bag, and loading the bases with still only one out. Jose Osuna then lifted a fly to medium right on which Newman tagged up and dashed for the plate. The throw arrived in time but catcher Buster Posey dropped the ball attempting to tag Newman, who scrambled back to slap the playe for the Pirates’ sixth run.
The Giants took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the first when Yastrzemski walked, was bunted to second by Posey, and scored on a soft single to center by Evan Longoria.
Giants’ starter Madison Bumgarner made that lead hold up until the fifth when Jacob Stallings smashed a homer to left to the tie the game, his fifth long ball of the year.
San Francisco got the lead right back in the bottom of the fifth when Dubon opened with a single and one out later Yastrzemski walked. The pair pulled off a double steal and both came around to score on Belt’s line double off the wall in center field.
Williams gave up another run in the sixth on a double, single and a ground out, finishing with four runs on eight hits in five and two thirds innings, walking three and striking out six.
From there the bullpen totally shut down the Giants, allowing only one baserunner, a single, over the final three and a third. Michael Feliz got a strikeout the end the sixth, Yacksel Rios and Richard Rodriguez each tossed a scoreless from, then Felipe Vazquez nailed down his 26th save, striking out two of the three batters he faced on a steady stream of fastballs at 100 and 101 mph.
Game two of the four game series is scheduled for 9:45 p.m. Eastern on Tuesday night, with the pirates’ rookie right-hander Mitch Keller (1-3, 8.18) set to face veteran Johnny Cueto, who’ll be making his first appearance of the season, coming off of Tommy John Surgery.