The Giants will try for an eighth straight win Thursday and look to sweep a road series from the Los Angeles Dodgers for the first time since 2002, when the teams close out their three-game set at Dodger Stadium.
Behind Bonds’ 741st career homer, San Francisco (11-8) defeated Los Angeles 6-4 on Wednesday to win seven in a row for the first time since June 19-25, 2004.
The Giants, who are 10-2 since opening the season 1-6, are one game behind the NL West-leading Dodgers (13-8) and will look to win eight straight for the first time since winning 10 in a row from May 20-31, 2004.
They have not swept a series at Dodger Stadium since April 2002.
“We’re putting some runs on the board and that’s huge for us,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “A lot of good things are happening.”
To keep the streak going the Giants must go through streaking Brad Penny (3-0, 1.37 ERA), who will try to help the Dodgers avoid a fourth straight loss.
“It seems like he’s got a new attitude out there this year,” Dodgers catcher Russell Martin said of Penny. “He’s keeping his composure a little bit better.”
The right-hander, who posted a 6.25 ERA after the All-Star break in 2006, allowed two earned runs and six hits in six innings Saturday, but did not earn a decision in Los Angeles’ 7-3 win over Pittsburgh.
Penny is 3-2 with a 3.52 ERA in 14 games - 13 starts - against San Francisco.
Bonds’ homer on Wednesday was his third in four games, leaving him 14 shy of Hank Aaron’s career record. He went 2-for-4 with three RBIs to increase his average to .346, to go with seven homers and 15 RBIs.
Bonds is 8-for-19 (.421) with four homers and seven RBIs during the Giants’ winning streak. He is a mediocre 6-for-23 (.261) lifetime against Penny, but three of those hits are homers.
“It’s an exciting time and with men on base, he’s just so dangerous,” Bochy said. “I enjoy watching him.”
Rafael Furcal and Russell each had two hits and an RBI on Wednesday for the Dodgers, who are hitting .240 in their last three games.
Russ Ortiz (2-1, 4.35 ERA) will look for his third straight win for the Giants on Thursday.
The right-hander’s only loss this season came against the Dodgers in his 2007 debut on April 7, when he allowed three runs and seven hits in five innings of San Francisco’s 4-1 defeat. For his career, Ortiz is 8-9 with a 5.07 ERA in 21 games - 20 starts - against the Dodgers.
He allowed two runs and eight hits in seven innings of San Francisco’s 4-2 win over Arizona on Friday.