Crawford launched a hanging curve from Pirates starter Edinson
Volquez into the right field seats in the fourth inning to snap a
scoreless tie. It was the first post-season grand slam hit by a
With Brandon Belt adding three RBIs with a pair of singles,
left-hander Bumgarner sailed through the Pirates lineup giving up
four hits, striking out 10 and walking one in a masterful
"Crawford obviously gave us a nice cushion, but it starts with that
guy on the mound and what a job he did," Giants manager Bruce Bochy
said about ace starter Bumgarner.
"It's hard to put together a better game than we just had."
The victory sent the Giants into the best-of-five NL Divisional
Series against the top-seeded NL East champion Washington Nationals
starting on Friday.
NL West winners the Los Angeles Dodgers host the NL Central champion
St. Louis Cardinals in the other divisional series.
The standing-room crowd of more than 40,000 that packed PNC Park
sent the decibel level soaring from the start and heeded a media
call to produce a "blackout" by wearing black to the game.
Yet it was Bumgarner who caused a Pittsburgh power outage with his
dominant command and confusing arsenal, giving the Pirates no hope
of a comeback after San Francisco's early barrage.
"He was on tonight," said Crawford. "When he does that, he's lights
Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle tipped his cap to the Giants
"He had it all working tonight. Absolutely a very professional, well
pitched game by him," Hurdle told reporters. "We tried to
counterpunch but we just couldn't muster anything."
Bumgarner, who was 18-10 during the regular season with a 2.98
earned run average, said Crawford's stunning blast was a turning
"That was huge. To go from a nothing-nothing ball game to 4-0 pretty
early on like that was pretty big for us," the pitcher said.
Crawford said his soaring grand slam, which came after singles by
Pablo Sandoval, Hunter Pence and a walk to Brandon Belt, was not his
[to top of second column]
"I was happy to be able to be in that situation, but the last thing
on my mind was probably to hit a home run," said Crawford.
"I was just trying to hit something good enough to get Pablo home. I
figured that would probably be enough for Madison."
Crawford, who hit 10 home runs this season, was stunned that his
slam was a playoff first by a shortstop.
"That's crazy," he said. "With all the great shortstops that have
played before, it's pretty special."
While the Giants carry on in pursuit of their third World Series
title in five seasons after winning it in 2010 and 2012, the Pirates
must wait in their quest to end a 35-year title drought.
"We finished short but we laid it all out for everybody every night.
We emptied the bucket for our fans every night we played, all 163
games," said manager Hurdle, whose team ended a 21-year postseason
absence last year.
"We've got more work to do because we all want to play longer. We
want to find a way to bring that sixth world championship back to
(Writing by Larry Fine in New York; Editing by Greg Stutchbury)
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