A year ago, the San Francisco Giants won 17 out of 19 games against the Arizona Diamondbacks. A few weeks ago, the Giants got swept by the Diamondbacks, punctuating a seven-game losing streak to start the unofficial second half of the season.
What a difference a year makes.
But unlike the last time these teams met, the Giants have some momentum. They just swept the Pittsburgh Pirates, highlighted by a come-from-behind, walk-off home run by Thairo Estrada during Sunday’s matinee.
Now they have four more games against a not-so-hot D-Backs team. Play against them like they did in late July and the team can start making vacation reservations for the Wild Card round. But play against them like they did in 2021, and San Francisco can keep dreaming of making a postseason push.
In other words, try and win, my dudes.
Who: San Francisco Giants vs. Arizona Diamondbacks
Where: Oracle Park, San Francisco, California
When: Monday (6:45 p.m. PT), Tuesday (6:45 p.m. PT), Wednesday (6:45 p.m. PT), and Thursday (12:45 p.m. PT)
National broadcasts: Tuesday (MLB Network, out of market only)
Monday: Alex Cobb vs. Madison Bumgarner
Tuesday: Jakob Junis vs. Merrill Kelly
Wednesday: Carlos Rodón vs. Zach Davies
Thursday: Logan Webb vs. Zac Gallen
Where they stand
Record: 57-57, 3rd in the NL West
Run differential: +19, 8th in the NL
Postseason standing: 2nd team out, 6 games back in the Wild Card
Momentum: 3-game winning streak, 6-4 in their last 10 games
Record: 53-61, 4th in the NL West
Run differential: -18, 9th in the NL
Postseason standing: 3rd team out, 10 games back in the Wild Card
Momentum: 2-game winning streak, 7-3 in their last 10 games
Season series: Diamondbacks lead 6-3
Three Giants to watch
LaMonte Wade Jr. After an absolute breakout season in 2021, Wade struggled to find his footing in 2022. “Late Night” has had a hard time staying on the field due to injuries, and when on the field he spent the first few months of the season searching for last year’s magic. He seems to have found it. Over his last seven games, Wade is hitting 6-18 with 2 walks, and all 6 of those hits have been for extra bases: 4 home runs and 2 doubles. Don’t look now, but he’s actually having a better offensive season than last year by wRC+. With the D-Backs scheduled to throw three righties at the Giants this series, look for Wade to keep the good times rolling.
Tommy La Stella: La Stella has earned some ire from the fanbase this year, and has had a tough and injury-filled season. But since returning from his latest IL stint, La Stella has been swinging a nice bat, hitting 9-30 with 5 doubles. At his best, he’s one of the team’s best contact hitters. The Giants are 10th in the Majors in team wRC+, but just 23rd in batting average. The former is infinitely more important than the latter, but a healthy La Stella consistently slapping singles and doubles would really help things.
Logan Webb: Webb was sensational in his last outing, striking out 9 batters in 8 shutout innings against the Pirates. He seems to get better when there’s more intensity and higher stakes, so it seems reasonable to think that he could be a player that leads one final postseason push.
Three D-Backs to watch
Madison Bumgarner: Will I ever get used to seeing MadBum in a different jersey? Probably not. Bumgarner is having his best season since signing with Arizona before the 2020 season, with a 4.13 ERA, a 4.51 FIP, and, most importantly, a clean bill of health. But he still doesn’t look like the player who donned a Giants jersey. Those numbers are significantly worse than any year of his Giants career, and his 6.5 strikeouts per 9 innings is hardly recognizable as the guy who struck out more than 190 hitters in 7 seasons with the Giants, including 251 in 2015.
Merrill Kelly: The last time the Giants faced
Chris Elliott Merrill Kelly, things didn’t go so well. During the aforementioned sweep, Kelly hurled 8 shutout innings, allowing just 3 hits, 0 walks, and striking out 7 Giants. He’s allowed just 10 hits and 4 runs in 21.1 innings against the Giants this year, which is in line with his excellent season — he has a 2.95 ERA and a 3.16 FIP.
Ketel Marte: As he so often does, the Diamondbacks best position player is having a field day against the Giants this year. The switch-hitter in 9-31 against San Francisco this season, with 2 home runs, 5 doubles, and 4 walks, good for an OPS of 1.017. The D-Backs don’t have a good offense, but Marte can change that on any given day.
Prior to the Pirates series, 45% of responders predicted a Giants sweep, which was pretty optimistic given how poorly the team was playing. But y’all were rewarded for your optimism, so I suggest you try it again.
Who wins the series?
This poll is closed
Giants win 3-1
Diamondbacks win 3-1