SAN DIEGO — Matt Kemp let the Giants come back. Then the longtime Dodger put them away.
Kemp made a big error in the top of the ninth but hit a one-out double in the bottom of the inning and scored the winning run on Jedd Gyorko's liner to the gap. With the 5-4 loss to the Padres, the Giants fell seven games back in the National League West with just 11 to play.
No matter what the Giants did late Wednesday, they weren’t going to make up ground in the division. The Dodgers beat the Diamondbacks 4-1, chopping another game off their magic number before the late fireworks got going in San Diego. Early on, this one was a pitcher’s duel.
Few have better stuff than Andrew Cashner, but he had trouble finding the strike zone and the Giants took advantage early on at Petco Park. Cashner walked Angel Pagan and Alejandro De Aza to open the game and then got outs from Matt Duffy and Buster Posey. Brandon Crawford picked his teammates up, lining a two-run single into right.
It was all about the pitchers from there, with Cashner having a relatively smooth ride through the sixth and Jake Peavy keeping the two-run lead intact before departing after six.
Manager Bruce Bochy has been burned a few times this season by letting Peavy try to get just a bit deeper into the game, so he was proactive Wednesday. He still got burned. Cory Gearrin entered for Peavy and put two runners on. Josh Osich nearly got out of the jam with a pair of strikeouts, but he left a fastball up to Yangervis Solarte and gave screamer to the gap that scored both runs.
Jarrett Parker, inserted on a double-switch in the bottom of the seventh, gave the Giants the lead with a high solo shot in the eighth that landed in the Western Metal Supply Co. building. The lead didn’t last long.
Sergio Romo gave up two singles with one out in the eighth. After a groundout from Derek Norris, light-hitting rookie Travis Jankowski smacked a slider down the third-base line, giving the Padres a 4-3 lead.
Kemp opened the door for a comeback in the ninth, dropping Posey’s leadoff flare to right. After a Crawford double, Craig Kimbrel struck out Mac Williamson (who was making his MLB debut) and Kelby Tomlinson. Facing Trevor Brown, a third straight rookie, Kimbrel airmailed a fastball to the backstop, allowing Posey to score the tying run.
Starting pitching report: Peavy gave up four hits and walked one over his six shutout innings. In 15 starts since returning from the disabled list, Peavy has a 3.36 ERA.
Bullpen report: For a while, it looked like Hunter Strickland got the biggest out of the night, a high fly to center from Kemp with two on and two down in the seventh.
At the plate: Parker is 5 for 10 since coming back up, with two homers and a double. A.J. Pollock robbed him last week of what would have been a third homer.
In the field: Marlon Byrd saved a run in the first with a leaping grab on the warning track in right.
Attendance: The Padres announced a crowd of 23,556 human beings. They were treated to “The Hills” by The Weeknd every time Derek Norris came to the plate.
Up next: Madison Bumgarner nearly threw a perfect game the last time he faced the Padres. He’ll square off against Ian Kennedy on Thursday at 6:10 p.m.