SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Before the first pitch, Giants outfielder LaMonte Wade Jr. accompanied manager Gabe Kapler to home plate for the lineup card exchange with Reds manager David Bell.
Wade wanted to personally tell Bell how much his late brother Mike meant to him while he was with the Twins. Former Minnesota bench coach Mike Bell died last month of cancer at age 46.
“It was incredible. An unbelievable gesture by LaMonte and Gabe and the Giants,” Bell said. “All I can say is what it meant to me and my family, just another sign and example of people Mike touched. I was blown away.”
After the heartwarming exchange at the plate, Joey Votto splashed a home run into McCovey Cove and Jesse Winker connected for a two-run shot, leading the Reds to a 3-0 victory over the Giants on Monday night.
Winker’s first home run of the year marked the first hit off Aaron Sanchez in the third and provided left-hander Wade Miley (2-0) with some early support.
“I felt really good, felt like I was cruising,” said Miley, who has started the season with 11 shutout innings.
Cincinnati bounced back after losing two straight — outscored 15-3 — at Arizona following a six-game winning streak.
Miley allowed two hits in five innings. Tejay Antone then struck out five over 3 2/3 hitless innings before Lucas Sims recorded the final out for his first career save in Cincinnati’s first shutout of the season. The Giants were shut out for the second time.
“Overall we’ve gotten some big hits but I don’t think this is the type of offense that we are,” Kapler said.
The Reds snapped San Francisco’s four-game winning streak and maintained a one-game lead in the NL Central over Milwaukee.
Sanchez (0-1) allowed two runs and three hits in five innings in his home debut, facing the Reds for the first time in his career. Sanchez showed his delight with a great lunging stop by shortstop Brandon Crawford on a sharp grounder by Winker for the first out of the game.
San Francisco starters have gone at least five innings and allowed three runs or fewer in all 10 games this season. It’s the Giants’ third-longest such streak to begin a season in the modern era.
While the Giants have said they can accommodate approximately 8,900 fans at 22% of ballpark capacity, attendance was 3,662 on a cold spring evening. Giants third baseman Evan Longoria threw a ball into the bleachers before the top of the ninth.
David Bell spent one special season with San Francisco, in 2002 when the Giants lost to the wild-card Angels in seven games in the World Series.
“I’ve never shied away from saying how much this team and organization and city has been a big part in my life,” Bell said before the game. “I only played one year here but it felt like I played a lifetime here. I think it was because of the team we had, the city, the fans. It was just a good year.”
Reds: INF Eugenio Suárez was hit on a hand by a pitch from Sanchez during the fourth inning but stayed in the game.
Giants: RF Mike Yastrzemski had a planned rest day, and Kapler said he will work to get the regulars days off after this initial homestand. “I think you’re going to see him regularly in the lineup going forward,” Kapler said. Yastrzemski entered as a pinch hitter in the eighth.
Cincinnati ace Luis Castillo (1-1, 6.97 ERA) pitches the middle game of the series opposite Giants opening-day starter and former Reds right-hander Kevin Gausman (0-0, 1.32 ERA). Cincinnati will see another one of its former pitchers when Johnny Cueto takes the mound for the Giants in the series finale Wednesday afternoon.
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