SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - Jose Quintana told Kyle Hendricks he would do all he could to follow him with another strong start by the Cubs rotation.
This is exactly what manager Joe Maddon hoped to see: the pitching getting on a little roll and hitters doing their part as the second half nears.
Victor Caratini hit an RBI double during a decisive seventh inning, helping Chicago back Quintana in a close game and beat the San Francisco Giants 2-0 on Tuesday night.
A night after losing 2-1 in 11 innings despite a strong start from Kyle Hendricks, the Cubs had enough offense for Quintana (8-6) - and they could have a healthy third baseman Kris Bryant back in the lineup for Wednesday afternoon's series finale.
Quintana allowed three hits in six scoreless innings to beat the Giants for the first time in his career after the lefty went 0-3 with a 5.82 ERA over his first three starts.
"I said to Kyle 'I'll try to follow you,'" Quintana said. "It's really good for us."
Addison Russell's one-out double in the seventh chased Giants starter Derek Holland (5-8). Russell advanced on Sam Dyson's wild pitch and scored on a bad throw by catcher Nick Hundley trying to get Russell at third. Caratini later doubled.
Carl Edwards Jr. struck out the side in order in the seventh, Justin Wilson followed with a perfect eighth and Steve Cishek closed it out for his third save after taking the loss Monday. Maddon said afterward Brandon Morrow wasn't available for the ninth because of a planned second consecutive day off.
The Giants got just one baserunner over the final four innings.
"We've had a lot of good innings out of a lot of different members of our bullpen," Maddon said. "So when it got to that tonight it's not like it was anything new."
Holland struck out eight and didn't walk a batter in 6 1/3 innings. Johnny Cueto had been the announced scheduled starter, but manager Bruce Bochy gave Cueto an extra day to recover, something that could be the norm in the second half for the veteran right-hander.
Holland has been versatile: In less than a week, he pinch-ran, pitched twice in relief then returned to the rotation.
"If I have to go back to the 'pen I'll be perfectly fine," he said. "Whatever Bochy and the guys come up with, I'm going to do."
Giants center fielder Gorkys Hernandez returned to the lineup after missing Monday's game nursing a tight calf that forced him to an early exit Sunday against the Cardinals.
Aside from a pinch-hit appearance in the eighth, Buster Posey had the night off for the Giants and was scheduled to catch the day game Wednesday. He has to skip the All-Star Game because of a lingering right hip injury that will require an injection.