KANSAS CITY -- Madison Bumgarner has three complete games this season. He has lost two of them.

The Giants squandered a strong start from their ace and plenty of offensive chances while losing 4-2 to the Kansas City Royals on Friday. They had nine runners on base in the first three innings but scored just twice, a fatal mistake against a team with one of the best bullpens in the American League.

"That game, you certainly feel you should have won with the hits and runners we had out there," manager Bruce Bochy said. "We didn't cash in enough."

Bumgarner entered the night with a 1.58 road ERA, the third-lowest mark in the majors, but the Royals got to him early. Billy Butler jumped on a fastball that caught too much of the plate, hitting a two-run homer to deep left.

The Giants caught up in the third but came away from the early innings feeling they should have done much more. They put two runners on with two outs in the first, but Michael Morse flew out to left.

Joaquin Arias doubled and Matt Duffy followed with a single to lead off the second. Juan Perez hit a blast down the left field line that was foul by about three feet, then struck out. Brandon Crawford also whiffed, and Angel Pagan flew out to center.

Hunter Pence hit a leadoff single an inning later but was thrown out trying to reach third on Pablo Sandoval's single to right. Pence was initially ruled safe, giving the Giants runners on first and third with one out, but a review showed that he came off the bag on his hard slide.


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"It happens in a snap of a finger," Pence said. "If you watch in full speed, could you tell? (But) I've got to find a way to stay on the base."

Morse followed with a single that would have scored Pence.

The Giants did get two runs on another double by Arias and single by Duffy, but Arias was thrown out at home on the latter hit. Both outfield assists came from right fielder Nori Aoki, who was the first Royals outfielder since 1970 to throw out two players in one inning.

The sloppy game ended up being a ninth loss for Bumgarner, who gave up three earned runs in eight innings while throwing a season-high 123 pitches.

He allowed seven hits, walked none and struck out five.

"He gave us all he had out there," Bochy said. "He gave us a chance to win. But we had too many missed opportunities."