San Francisco, CA (Sports Network) - Chase Headley knocked in Ryan Ludwick with the go-ahead run in the sixth inning as San Diego edged the Giants, 3-2, in the opener of a big three-game series between the NL West rivals.
Headley also tripled in a run in the second and scored on Scott Hairston's sacrifice fly, as the Padres won their fifth straight contest and widened their lead to 3 1/2 games over San Francisco in the division. They improved to 8-1 this season against the Giants.
Clayton Richard (10-5) gave up six hits and two runs over six frames to win his third straight decision. He's 6-1 over his last 10 starts. Heath Bell worked around a one-out walk to Pablo Sandoval and fanned Aaron Rowand to end the game, picking up his 35th save of the season and fourth in as many days.
Jonathan Sanchez (8-8), who predicted a Giants sweep this weekend, permitted five hits and three runs over 5 1/3 innings as San Francisco had its two-game winning streak snapped.
San Diego actually won the game while playing under protest due to a controversial call in the fourth inning when the Padres should have taken the lead. The game was tied 2-2 at the time when Headley singled, stole second and went to third on Buster Posey's throwing error. Hairston walked and Chris Denorfia then hit a ball off Sanchez's body to second baseman Freddy Sanchez. Hairston scrambled in front of the second baseman, who was falling when he threw to first base. Denorfia beat the throw, but Hairston was called out for interfering with Sanchez and was called out after a lengthy conference by the umpiring crew.
In the sixth, Adrian Gonzalez doubled to lead off and Ludwick singled. Yorvit Torrealba grounded into a fielder's choice with Gonzalez out in a rundown. Headley then hit a ball to shortstop, but Ludwick slid in safely by beating Juan Uribe's throw to the plate.
The Giants couldn't mount a rally over the final three frames.
Aubrey Huff doubled in a run in the opening inning and scored on Pat Burrell's fielder's choice grounder before the Padres tied the game in the second.
Bell has 22 straight saves...Earlier in the day, the Giants acquired outfielder Jose Guillen from the Kansas City Royals in exchange for a player to be named later...San Diego went 1-for-11 with men in scoring position.