Giants try to make up ground on Dodgers

( - The San Francisco Giants can make up some ground in the NL West when they begin a three-game series Tuesday versus the rival Los Angeles Dodgers at AT&T Park.

The Giants are 4 1/2 games behind the Dodgers for the NL West lead and have been rolling in the month of May with 11 wins in 16 chances.

San Francisco won the last three portions of a four-game series against the Cincinnati Reds and posted a 9-8 victory Sunday. Brandon Belt and Hunter Pence both homered, Norichika Aoki had three hits and three RBI, and Brandon Crawford scored three runs for the Giants.

Belt ended 3-for-4 with three runs scored in the win.

The San Francisco bullpen had to pitch seven innings after Chris Heston was knocked out after throwing two-plus frames, allowing five runs on seven hits and two walks. The win was awarded to Yusmeiro Petit after he allowed one run in three innings.

"It was a hard-fought game," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "They punched back, and we punched back."

San Francisco went 4-2 on its trip and will sent veteran right-hander Tim Hudson to the AT&T Park mound Tuesday. Hudson is only 1-3 with a 4.57 earned run average over seven starts and did not record a decision in last Wednesday's 4-3 loss at Houston, touched for three runs in 5 1/3 innings.

Hudson is 1-3 in four home starts and 6-6 with a 4.03 ERA in 17 career starts against the Dodgers.

Los Angeles split a four-game series with the Colorado Rockies and posted a 1-0 win Sunday at Dodger Stadium. Yasmani Grandal scored Adrian Gonzalez with an RBI single in the fourth inning and Mike Bolsinger threw six scoreless innings of three-hit ball for the win.

Bolsinger struck out six and walked two batters, while closer Kenley Jansen nailed down his first save in the ninth. Yimi Garcia and Chris Hatcher preceded Jansen on the hill with a scoreless inning apiece.

"With the bullpen that we have, it seems like our starters should just go five innings," Grandal said.

The Dodgers have won 12 of their past 17 games and last dropped a series with a three-game sweep at the hands of the Giants from April 21-23 by the bay.

Carlos Frias toes the rubber for the Dodgers in Tuesday's opener and is 3-0 with a 2.89 earned run average in five games (3 starts). He did not factor in the outcome of a 5-4 loss to Miami last Wednesday and permitted three runs and six hits in six innings. He struck out five and walked one.

Frias has allowed three runs in each of his previous two outings and is 1-0 with a 4.15 ERA in two career relief appearances against the Giants.

San Francisco is 4-2 against the Dodgers this season.