SAN FRANCISCO - The Giants have spent most of this season evenly trading wins and losses. They've taken that tactic a step further, and over the past two days have been on opposite ends of offensive explosions.
A night after an ugly loss, the lineup ripped Pirates pitching and sparked a 13-10 win that was far closer than it should have been. The Giants snapped their three-game losing streak and continued to hang just close enough in the NL West that they won't yet sell. They picked up games on the Dodgers and Diamondbacks, and once again sit six back.
This one wasn't easy in the end. The Giants once led 11-3, but gave much of that cushion back and nearly had the lead cut to one in the eighth when Josh Bell flied out to warning track. Will Smith, the closer, ultimately had to finish the night.
--- During the first three games of this homestand, the Giants twice failed to get a hit the first time through the order. They had seven runs on nine hits by the end of the third inning Friday. Progress.
--- Andrew McCutchen kicked it off with his first homer against his former team. He found the arcade for his ninth career leadoff homer and the fifth leadoff homer by a Giant this season. McCutchen entered the night 2-for-18 against the Pirates but homered and drew four walks.
--- Buster Posey had four singles and three RBI through the first four innings. He finished with the four hits after getting pulled early. Posey's average is back up to .296, so he has a good shot at finishing above .300 for the sixth time in nine big league seasons.
--- The Giants opened the night with diving catches by Brandon Crawford and Alen Hanson, with Derek Holland tipping his cap from the mound. Holland chose a good night to have a below average night. He was charged with four earned on 10 hits in 6 1/3 innings, but picked up the win.
--- Kyle Crick drilled Evan Longoria in the seventh and nearly hit Joe Panik. The Giants were ticked about it, and Hunter Pence yelled at the Pirates dugout in the middle of the inning. It was a bit odd for the Giants to be mad about Crick's lack of control. He once walked more than a batter an inning for an entire season as a ... Giants prospect.
--- There was a review in the fifth inning that took two minutes even though the first replay shown on the scoreboard at AT&T Park clearly showed Bell had hit a double. New rule: The umpires can hang up the phone and do it themselves if a replay is that clear.