Jake Peavy looked like the guy who helped carry the Giants to the postseason last year. The Giants, however, continued to look like the team that just got swept by the lowly Marlins.
Peavy pitched well in his return to the rotation but the Giants managed just a solo homer in a 2-1 loss to the Washington Nationals. They're 0-4 on this road trip to the other coast.
The radar gun showed right away that this was a different Peavy than the one who tried to fight through back and hip injuries in two April starts. Peavy topped out at 90 mph back then, but he hit 92 in the first inning and regularly touched that mark throughout a rainy day at Nationals Park.
Peavy settled in after the first, retiring every National but Bryce Harper (a walk) from the second through sixth innings. The Giants, meanwhile, had little luck against Gio Gonalez, but their best hitter changed that in the top of the seventh.
Buster Posey jumped on a first-pitch fastball from Gonzalez and crushed it to center. The blast was Posey’s 14th of the year, but the lead wouldn’t last long.
Harper drew his third walk while leading off the bottom of the seventh and Clint Robinson followed with a two-run shot to right. Catcher Andrew Susac had called for a fastball outside but Peavy’s two-seamer cut right back over the inner half of the plate and Robinson pulled a Justin Bour.
Starting pitching report: Peavy gave the Giants exactly what they need from that spot in the rotation. He gave up just three hits and two earned runs in 6 1/3 innings, throwing 94 pitches. Peavy did walk four, but Harper got three of the passes and nobody wants to pitch to that dude these days.
Bullpen report: Left-hander Josh Osich, 26, made his MLB debut in the eighth and pitched a scoreless frame. He put two on ahead of Harper but got him to fly out on a 96 mph fastball. Osich was called up Friday to give the Giants a second lefty in the bullpen while Jeremy Affeldt is on the DL.
At the plate: Posey has five homers in his last 13 games and now leads MLB catchers with 14.
In the field: The most notable play in the field actually involved bad baserunning. Angel Pagan thought he was thrown out at second on a two-out grounder in the top of the sixth, but shortstop Ian Desmond had dropped the throw. Pagan took off for the visiting dugout and Desmond chased him down for the third out.
Up next: Set your alarms! Madison Bumgarner faces Stephen Strasburg in a game that starts at 11 a.m. out in Washington D.C. Bumgarner got the early July 4 game in 2012 and struggled with it, giving up seven earned runs in five innings.