CINCINNATI -- One game from elimination, the Giants promise to fight and claw until they're done.
"And bite," Buster Posey added, after the Giants lost Game 2 of their National League Division Series.
But all that scrappiness might not matter against a Cincinnati Reds team that has promised to show up to the table Tuesday for Game 3 with a matching appetite.
"You stay hungry and humble," Reds manager Dusty Baker said Monday. "This is a resilient team, a very close team, and these guys find a way."
Baker speaks from experience. The Giants came to Cincinnati repeating the mantra that the series isn't over until it's truly over, and that's a lesson Baker learned a decade ago -- with the Giants.
Baker's Giants hammered the Anaheim Angels in Game 5 of the 2002 World Series and took a 5-0 lead into the bottom of the seventh inning of a Game 6 that finally could have brought a title to San Francisco. But the Angels stunned the Giants that night with six unanswered runs, and 24 hours later the Giants watched as the opposition celebrated a championship.
Baker, now the undisputed leader of the Reds, values the grind-it-out attitude of his team, and it's the same attitude that got the Giants through a tumultuous season.
But in two losses at AT&T Park, the Giants saw that they need to grind a little harder.
After beating up on the Houston Astros, San Diego Padres and Colorado Rockies for much of the second half, the Giants were knocked square in the mouth by one of baseball's most complete teams.
"You can tell the Reds are very locked in right now," said first baseman Brandon Belt, one of the few Giants to have contributed this postseason. "It's obviously been an adjustment. We've got to bring our intensity level up. If not, we're going to be flying home tomorrow."
While the Giants are in win-or-go-home mode, the Reds feel pressure of their own. The last time they played a postseason game at Great American Ball Park, in 2010, the Philadelphia Phillies shut out the home team to complete a three-game NLDS sweep.
Two years later, the Reds still have not completely earned back the trust of the home fans. Shortly after throwing a no-hitter last month, Game 3 starter Homer Bailey complained about lagging fan support.
"I think what everybody is witnessing with this team is pretty special," he said. "It shouldn't go overlooked."
Baker is more understanding, saying the 2010 sweep is still fresh in the minds of locals.
"They don't want to set themselves up to be disappointed," he said.
That's provided a backbone for a team that needed little help. The Reds have a deep lineup and a talented pitching staff, backed by a flame-throwing bullpen.
Game 3 starter Ryan Vogelsong said the Giants needed to change their game plan. "Obviously, I think we need to attack some people differently," Vogelsong said.
With Vogelsong, the ultimate battler, leading the way, the Giants will keep fighting. But they're not just tussling with the Reds. They're staring down history. The 2001 New York Yankees are the only team to win a division series after losing the first two games at home, but the Yankees, facing the A's, had the advantage of returning home for Game 5.
The Giants must win three straight at Great American Ball Park, where the Reds were 50-31 this season.
Can the Giants pull off the miracle?
"We still have confidence -- we have to," Belt said. "Hopefully we're the first team to do it."