SAN FRANCISCO — Brayan Villarreal walked Marco Scutaro with the bases loaded and two outs in the bottom of the ninth, handing the San Francisco Giants a 3-2 victory over the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday night.
Roger Kieschnick started the winning rally with a one-out single off Franklin Morales (2-1). The Giants loaded the bases with two outs when Morales walked Andres Torres and hit pinch-hitter Hector Sanchez with a pitch on the left wrist.
Villarreal, acquired last month from Detroit, then threw four straight balls to Scutaro in his first appearance with the Red Sox, giving the defending World Series champions a rare reason to celebrate this summer.
The Red Sox couldn't hold a 2-0 lead and lost for the fifth time in seven games to fall percentage points behind Tampa Bay for the lead in the AL East.
Sergio Romo (4-6) pitched a perfect ninth for the win.
After twice failing to get a runner in from third with no outs, the Giants finally delivered in the eighth inning to tie the game.
Scutaro reached on a one-out single and went to third on Brandon Belt's single against Junichi Tazawa. Buster Posey then hit a high fly down the right-field line that Shane Victorino caught in foul territory. Scutaro scored easily on the sacrifice fly but Tazawa escaped without any further damage to keep the score tied at 2.
Victorino helped give Boston the lead when he hit a rare right-handed homer off a righty pitcher. The switch-hitting Victorino is unable to bat left-handed because of an injured left leg. But that did not bother him when he led off the third inning with a drive to left off Ryan Vogelsong that made it 2-0.
It was just the second time Victorino had hit a right-handed homer against a righty in his career, also doing it against knuckleballer R.A. Dickey on Sept. 24, 2010, according to STATS LLC.
It looked as if that 2-0 lead would stand up when Jake Peavy escaped jams in the fourth and fifth innings. Belt, who had three hits, was stranded after a leadoff triple in the fourth when Posey grounded