The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

Sports

October 26, 2012

With small ball, Giants win 2-0 for 2-0 WS lead



SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Long ball one night, a Giant dose of small ball the next.

Two wins in two games and suddenly San Francisco doesn't need to dig itself out of a postseason hole for a change.

Madison Bumgarner shut down the Detroit Tigers for seven innings, then the Giants took advantage of a bunt that stayed fair to eke out the go-ahead run in a 2-0 win Thursday night for a 2-0 edge in the World Series.

Gregor Blanco's single trickled to a stop inches fair on the infield dirt, setting up Brandon Crawford's run-scoring double-play grounder in the seventh. Hunter Pence added a sacrifice fly in the eighth, and that was plenty for these masters of the October comeback.

"It definitely feels a whole lot better than having our backs against the wall," Bumgarner said. "But you can't relax. We've got to keep pushing."

Game 3 will be Saturday night in Detroit and for once, the Giants aren't playing from behind. They overcame a 2-0 deficit to beat Cincinnati in the best-of-five division series and escaped a 3-1 hole against St. Louis in the NLCS.

A day after Pablo Sandoval homered three times, the favored Tigers wondered what other way they could lose. Prince Fielder was thrown out at the plate by a hair and moments later pitcher Doug Fister was struck squarely in the head by Blanco's line drive, a ball hit so hard that it caromed into shallow center field.

"They asked me the typical concussion questions," Fister said. "I'm not concerned. I have a minor bump. According to my dad, my whole life his saying has always been if I got hit in the head I'd be OK. That's how I take it."

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