| Sports

Larger text Larger text Smaller text Smaller text | Order Photo Reprints

Giants beat Reds, 8-3; NLDS even at 2 games apiece

Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval (right) is congratulated by third base coach Tim Flannery (1) after hitting a two-run homer against the Reds in the seventh inning of Game 4 of the NL Division Series on Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2012, in Cincinnati. AP Photo/Michael Keating

Pirates/MLB Videos

Email Newsletters

Sign up for one of our email newsletters.
By The Associated Press
Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2012, 8:46 p.m.

CINCINNATI — Facing elimination again, the San Francisco Giants came out swinging. Got a saving relief appearance from Tim Lincecum, too.

Angel Pagan led off the game with a home run, Gregor Blanco and Pablo Sandoval connected later and the Giants beat the Cincinnati Reds, 8-3, on Wednesday, evening their NL Division Series at 2.

Lincecum, the two-time Cy Young winner relegated to the bullpen, also delivered. He entered in the fourth with the Giants ahead, 3-2, struck out six while giving up just one run in 4 13 innings and allowed his team to pull away.

“I knew he would play a huge role in this,” manager Bruce Bochy said. “And I know of other situations where starters have been in the 'pen and really done a great job to help their team win. We knew Timmy would play a critical role in the series like he did tonight.”

The Giants can complete an unprecedented comeback Thursday. No team has recovered from a 2-0 deficit in a best-of-five series by winning three on the road, according to STATS LLC.

“Thanks to the win today, there will be a tomorrow,” Pagan said. “And we are ready for that.”

Matt Cain, who lost the series opener and has yet to beat the Reds in three tries this season, will start Game 5 against Mat Latos.

The Giants' hitters emerged from a series-long slump and extended Cincinnati's playoff misery. The Reds haven't won a postseason game at home in 17 years.

One thing in the Reds' favor: They haven't dropped three straight at home all season.

“I'd like to think that we still have the advantage,” Reds outfielder Jay Bruce said. “We're at home. I expect Mat to come up with a big game.”

The Reds were hoping to start ace Johnny Cueto but had to drop him off the roster a few hours before Wednesday's first pitch because he was still bothered by a strained muscle in his right side. He won't be available if Cincinnati wins Game 5 and reaches the NL Championship Series.

The Giants broke out against Mike Leake, who replaced Cueto and had a rough time.

Pagan homered on the game's second pitch. Blanco hit a two-run shot in the second. And Sandoval's two-run shot in the seventh made it 8-3 and matched the Giants' season high for homers.

Subscribe today! Click here for our subscription offers.



Show commenting policy

Most-Read Pirates

  1. Former Pirates pitcher Happ agrees to $36 million, 3-year deal with Blue Jays
  2. Pirates sign free agent 1B-OF Goebbert, RHP Webster
  3. Pirates protect top prospects in advance of Rule 5 draft
  4. Pirates, Orioles had trade talks involving 2B Walker
  5. Pirates sign independent league pitcher
  6. Pirates miss out on bid for Korean slugger Park
  7. Pirates, Happ interested in coming to terms on deal
  8. Rossi: Baseball should retire Roberto Clemente’s No. 21