SAN FRANCISCO — James McDonald took no pleasure in being the only player to reach base against Matt Cain.

As has been the case so far this season, even success for the Pittsburgh Pirates has been hard to celebrate.

Cain allowed only a single to the opposing pitcher in the sixth inning during a near-perfect performance Friday, throwing his third career one-hitter to lead the Giants past the Pirates 5-0 in San Francisco’s home opener.

“You think about, it’s like, ‘Man, the pitcher stood in his way for a perfect game,’ ” a somber McDonald said. “But it happens.”

Cain (1-0) struck out 11 and permitted just the lone runner in the fifth shutout and 14th complete game of his career. McDonald, a career .069 hitter coming into the game, lined a sharp single to left field with two outs in the sixth inning.

The hit stood over the final 10 outs and remained the only blemish on Cain’s remarkable afternoon.

Leave it to another pitcher to prevent perfection.

“That’s the beauty of the game,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. “A swinging bat is a dangerous bat. I should’ve hit him higher in the lineup.”

– The 13-year-old son of a Giants fan nearly beaten to death outside Dodger Stadium last year threw out the first pitch at San Francisco’s home opener with his dad live on the video board.

As the entire Giants team stood atop the mound Friday, Bryan Stow appeared on the center-field screen with his mother, Ann. He told Tyler, “Good luck, son,” in a touching moment.

Stow’s family has said the 43-year-old former paramedic is undergoing aggressive therapy to help him become more independent. He now shares an apartment with two other patients, and they have full-time assistance.

— from wire reports

Source : Cain nearly perfect as Giants blank Pirates – GoErie.com

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