Giants deadlock series

Reds fail again

Giants 8
Reds 3

CINCINNATI — Angel Pagan connects on the second pitch of the game. A Giants team that finished last in homers goes on to hit three. Tim Lincecum pitches like a two-time Cy Young winner — this time, out of the bullpen.

So many unusual things moved San Francisco to the verge of an unprecedented comeback.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

Pagan hit the first leadoff homer in Giants postseason history, and Gregor Blanco and Pablo Sandoval connected later for an 8-3 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday that evened their National League Division Series at 2-all.

No team has recovered from a 2-0 deficit in a best-of-five series by winning three on the road, according to STATS LLC. This one can do it with a victory Thursday at Great American Ball Park.

‘‘Thanks to the win today, there will be a tomorrow,’’ Pagan said. ‘‘And we are ready for that.’’

Matt Cain, who lost the series opener and has yet to beat the Reds in three tries this season, will start Game 5 against Mat Latos.

Facing elimination, the Giants’ slumping hitters came out swinging and extended Cincinnati’s playoff misery. The Reds haven’t won a postseason game at home in 17 years.

One thing in the Reds’ favor — they haven’t dropped three straight at home all season.

‘‘I’d like to think that we still have the advantage,’’ Reds outfielder Jay Bruce said. ‘‘We’re at home. I expect Mat to come up with a big game. I’m looking forward to it.’’