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Craw power: SS, Giants making hard contact

Homers from Crawford, Pence mark fifth straight game with big fly
MLB.com

DETROIT -- San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy said candidly before Tuesday's game that his team isn't one that typically hits with power. And the Giants just so happened to be facing Michael Fulmer, who entered the game with the longest active homerless streak in the Majors.

Somehow, the result was a pair of home runs and a fistful of long flyouts for the Giants in their 5-3 loss to the Tigers.

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DETROIT -- San Francisco manager Bruce Bochy said candidly before Tuesday's game that his team isn't one that typically hits with power. And the Giants just so happened to be facing Michael Fulmer, who entered the game with the longest active homerless streak in the Majors.

Somehow, the result was a pair of home runs and a fistful of long flyouts for the Giants in their 5-3 loss to the Tigers.

View Full Game Coverage

"It's a great sign, isn't it?" Bochy said after. "That's what gets you back in the game, a lot of times, is that long ball. We got it today."

The Giants, who are last in National League West, trail everyone when it comes to hitting home runs. They entered Tuesday with 70 homers in 84 games. They've homered five games in a row, but this is only the third time this season they've had a streak at least that long.

"As you know, in [baseball] today, there's a lot more home runs going on," Bochy said in his pregame session. "This wasn't happening for us."

The first home run Tuesday left quickly, and it was only in doubt because it traveled to the right-center-field alley, the deepest part of Comerica Park. Hunter Pence laced a high fastball a projected 413 feet the opposite way to put the Giants up, 1-0, in the first inning.

Video: SF@DET: Pence crushes solo homer to open the scoring

In the second, San Francisco squared up Fulmer for three deep flyouts, including one by Buster Posey that traveled an estimated 408 feet and had a 95 percent hit probability, according to Statcast™. For the game, the Giants hit eight balls that traveled more than 340 projected feet.

Down two runs in the fifth, Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford lofted a ball to right field at a 40-degree launch angle, according to Statcast™, off the armrest of a seat in the first row of the right-field seats. Crawford said he knew he hit it well, but having already hit a warning-track flyout earlier, he was relieved that the ball carried as much as it needed to.

"We had a lot of, I thought, good hard contact," Bochy said. "We didn't have a large number of hits, but we had some pretty good contact against a pretty good pitcher."

Crawford's day -- including a deep flyout, a game-tying home run and a hard groundout to first -- was particularly encouraging amid a rough stretch for the shortstop. In his previous 24 games, dating back to June 5, he was 15-for-92 (.163) with 23 strikeouts and just four extra-base hits.

The solid contact and fortuitous homer -- which only had a 25 percent hit probability, according to Statcast™, and barely landed past J.D. Martinez's glove -- were positive signs that he isn't going to overlook.

"Any hit right now is a momentum builder," Crawford said with a laugh. "I'm just happy that I hit a few balls hard today, and hopefully they start finding more holes. And I don't have to hit it out of the park to not find a glove."

Jordan Horrobin is a reporter for MLB.com based in Detroit.

San Francisco Giants, Brandon Crawford, Hunter Pence