(CINCINNATI) — The San Francisco Giants are headed back to the National League Championship Series after defeating the Cincinnati Reds, 6-4, on Thursday afternoon.
The Giants became the first NL team to win a division series after being down 0-2 and also made history by completing the comeback with three consecutive road victories.
Reds starter Mat Latos, who relieved injured starter Johnny Cueto in Game 1, served up a grand slam to Giants catcher Buster Posey in the top of the fifth inning to cap a six-run inning for San Francisco.
The long ball sent Latos to the dugout and Sam LeCure entered in relief to retire the next two batters in the fifth.
The Reds did rally back when Brandon Phillips doubled in two runs in the bottom of the fifth, followed by a solo homer from Ryan Ludwick in the sixth to pull them within three, but Matt Cain struck out Ryan Hanigan and Posey threw out Jay Bruce at third base to stop the rally. George Kontos came in to record the final out of the inning after Cain was pulled.
The Reds chipped away in the bottom of the ninth off closer Sergio Romo, who allowed one run, but Romo struck out Scott Rolen for the final out.
Cain picked up the win, pitching 5.2 innings, striking out five, giving up six hits on three runs. Teams had been 0-21 when down 0-2 in an NLDS since the division series format switched in 1995.
The Giants last made the NLCS in 2010, the same year they won the World Series.
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Jill Martin, CNN