The San Francisco Giants' hitters and relievers are leading the way during a red-hot stretch.
The beneficiary of both the bats and the bullpen in his past two starts, Madison Bumgarner will try to lead the Giants to a 10th win in 11 games Saturday against the Oakland Athletics.
San Francisco (52-44) is batting .339 and averaging 7.0 runs in its last 10 contests, and had 17 hits in a 9-3 win in Friday's series opener. Buster Posey went 3 for 4 and is batting .432 with 26 RBIs in his last 21 games.
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Hunter Pence was 4 for 5 with two RBIs and is batting .515 with three homers in his last eight contests against Oakland. He is hitting .412 in his past eight games overall, helping the Giants overtake the second wild-card spot from the Chicago Cubs.
"It's a good feeling this time of the year to be involved in a race to play some playoff games," Pence said. "We're just trying to put up good at bats. It's really just, keep grinding."
The Giants' bullpen contributed three scoreless innings and has a 1.05 ERA in the 9-1 stretch. Bumgarner (10-5, 3.27 ERA) profited from four scoreless innings in a 2-1 win in Arizona on Sunday.
The left-hander yielded one run in five innings and hasn't pitched past the sixth in any of his last three starts. He had gone at least six innings in 30 of his previous 32 starts dating back to the beginning of August, including all six in last year's postseason.
"We've got guys in the bullpen that are obviously capable of coming in and shutting the door, which they did," Bumgarner said. "It worked out great for us. They've been unbelievable."
Bumgarner went 5 2-3 innings July 10 against Philadelphia and got 10 runs of support in a 15-2 victory. He's needed that kind of help but hasn't gotten it in his past two starts against Oakland (44-54).
Bumgarner was charged with six runs and 10 hits in his lone matchup last season, a 6-1 loss July 8, and is 1-2 with a 6.41 ERA in three career starts against the A's. That's his second-worst ERA versus any opponent behind an 11.05 mark in two starts against Minnesota.
Oakland is expected to bring up Chris Bassitt (0-2, 2.93) from the minors for the fourth time this season Saturday. The right-hander will likely take a permanent spot in the rotation because Scott Kazmir was traded to Houston on Thursday and Jesse Hahn was placed on the disabled list before the All-Star break.
Bassitt logged a 2.65 ERA in three starts for the A's and gave up two runs in 6 1-3 innings in his most recent July 11, a 5-4 win in Cleveland.
"It's a chance for him to get settled in," manager Bob Melvin said. "He's done all he can and it looks like he'll be here for a while."
Bassitt, 1-3 with a 3.35 ERA in eight major league starts, will make his first appearance against San Francisco.
Billy Burns is doubtful to play after suffering a testicular contusion Friday.