'Terrific' Blach has another strong start

'Terrific' Blach has another strong start

SAN FRANCISCO -- Ty Blach has been as good as the Giants could hope for since replacing ace Madison Bumgarner in the starting rotation. Without much run support or help from San Francisco's bullpen, however, the young left-hander doesn't have much to show for it.

Blach pitched seven scoreless innings in the Giants' 5-2, 12-inning loss to San Diego on Sunday and was in line for his second career win after leaving with a 2-0 lead before former Giants backup catcher Hector Sanchez hit a game-tying home run off closer Mark Melancon in the ninth.

By the time Wil Myers hit a three-run blast off George Kontos in the 12th, Blach's outing was just a distant memory -- but one that manager Bruce Bochy isn't about to forget.

"He's been terrific," Bochy said. "The last inning he was probably running on fumes and got through that inning. It's really a shame he didn't get a win with the great effort we got from him."

It was the second straight strong outing for Blach, who began the season in San Francisco's bullpen. He gave up two runs over five innings against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday but lost, 2-1.

Blach's outing against the Padres lowered his ERA to 1.50 in two starts since Bumgarner injured his shoulder and ribs in a dirt-bike accident.

"I feel good physically, and mentally I feel locked in," Blach said. "I feel like I'm able to execute pretty well right now. I'm still trying to refine a few things and tighten up some breaking balls, that kind of good, but I felt pretty good execution-wise."

Blach's sacrifice fly

Blach had to pitch out of a pair of jams in the third and fourth when he had some minor control issues but was otherwise on top of his game most of the afternoon. He retired the side in order three times and set down 11 of the final 12 batters he faced.

With Bumgarner all but certain to miss the next three months recovering from his injuries, Blach's performance since moving into the rotation has been a welcomed sight for the Giants.

"He just competes so well in everything he does," Bochy said. "With all we threw at him last September, throwing in the bullpen and getting a couple starts, he doesn't surprise me. This guy's got a lot of confidence, deep faith. He's going to just give it his all."

That includes at the plate.

Blach tallied his first career RBI with a sacrifice fly in the fifth that drove in Joe Panik.

"He pitched well and threw out some good at-bats," Bochy said. "What a game."

Michael Wagaman is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the Giants on Sunday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.