The Giants take two against the Dodgers and now move on to play the Cardinals.
It was a good series for the Giants vs. the Dodgers as they took 2 out of 3 from Los Angeles. Matt Cain pitched a great game 1 which the Giants won 8-4. Blach kept it rolling in game 2 and the Giants won that game 2-1, but Cueto couldn’t out duel Dodgers’ ace Clayton Kershaw as the Dodgers pulled out the win 6-1.
The Giants activated closer Mark Melancon on Wednesday after a couple of weeks on the DL, but they didn’t need him to finish off the Dodger series. The Giants will head off to St. Louis to take on the Cardinals, then they head to Chicago to play the Cubs. This is going to be a tough week for them as the Cardinals are currently in 1st place in the NL Central, while the Cubs are hanging around the .500 mark. Everyone knows how good the Cubs are so it will not be an easy series. It’s a rematch of last year’s NLDS in which the Cubs won in 4 games. The Giants should have won that 4th game to force a game 5 but the bullpen blew a 3 run lead in the 9th inning and that allowed the Cubs to move on to the NLCS.
The Giants have hit at least one home run as a team in each of their last 10 games. Buster Posey hit home runs in each game of the Mets series. Belt then hit a home run in the next game against the Reds as did Denard Span. The game after that was the 17th inning walk-off homer by Buster Posey, also against the Reds. Then Belt and Justin Ruggiano put a couple of baseballs in the seats. The next day, Brandon Belt crushed one into McCovey Cove to keep the streak going. That was the 77th splash hit in AT&T Park history. Posey was next as he blasted one in the first game against the Dodgers. In the 2nd game against LA, it was Belt who hit one out towards right center. And, in the final game against LA, Eduardo Nunez hit his first of the year in the 9th inning to end the shutout bid and extend the streak. They’ve hit 12 home runs in the last 10 games overall, and since the streak began are 6-4.
Scheduled to pitch in St. Louis for the Cardinals for game 1 is Michael Wacha. Giants fans most remember him as the pitcher who gave up the game-tying home run to Michael Morse in the 8th inning of game 5 of the 2014 NLCS. Wacha has been good this year posting an ERA of 2.19. The Giants will counter with Matt Moore (2-4, 5.67).
Game 2’s scheduled starters are Jeff Samardzija (1-5, 5.26) and Dominican phenom and Cardinals’ ace Carlos Martinez (3-3, 3.88). Martinez is a flame thrower who gets his fastball up over 97 mph. The Giants are among the worst hitting teams in the MLB against fastballs of that velocity. Samardzija has been hot and cold but was good his last start against the Reds. He pitched 6.2 innings and gave up 3 runs all earned. He picked up his first win of the season and struck out 8 hitters. The Giants need him to right the ship and have about 4 or 5 good starts in a row to have a chance to get back to .500 before the All-Star break.
The Giants have not yet announced a starter for game 3, but the rotation has Cain following Samardzija. The Cardinals look to start Adam Wainwright (3-3, 5.31).
There’s an off day for the Giants on Thursday and they will begin the series with the Cardinals on Friday.