SAN FRANCISCO — Pablo Sandoval singled in the go-ahead run in the seventh inning, lifting the San Francisco Giants to a 2-1 victory over the rival Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night and into first place in the NL West.
The struggling Sandoval came through after reliever J.P. Howell (1-1) intentionally walked Hunter Pence with two outs. Sandoval, who entered the game batting just .164, grounded into center field to score Joaquin Arias from second.
Jean Machi (3-0) pitched out of a bases-loaded jam earlier in the seventh for the win.
Buster Posey broke an 0-for-13 skid with an RBI single in the third to give the Giants a 1-0 lead. Dee Gordon’s tying triple in the sixth accounted for the Dodgers’ lone run.
Los Angeles at least dodged worse news.
Shortstop Hanley Ramirez left in the seventh after getting hit by a pitch from Ryan Vogelsong on the top of his left hand. The team said X-rays on Ramirez’s hand were negative.
Sergio Romo pitched a perfect ninth for his fourth save, striking out Adrian Gonzalez and Matt Kemp to end the game.
Vogelsong allowed the one run and four hits in six-plus innings to help the Giants win their third straight game. He struck out two and walked two to match Paul Maholm most of the way.