If there is one team in Major League Baseball who are playing for something, but aren’t going to the postseason, it would be the San Francisco Giants. It’s been a frustrating year for the Giants, a year that they were expected to make some noise in the National League. They spent money in the offseason to give themselves a chance, but when it was time to hit the field nothing translated into wins.
Their most coveted grab, Andrew McCutchen, got traded to the New York Yankees. His time with the Giants was short lived and now he’s on a team where he could possibly go deep into the postseason. When the Giants knew they weren’t going to be going to the postseason, it was a good move to move McCutchen elsewhere. They’ve been pathetic offensively this season, especially since they trade McCutchen, but it’s all a moot point with the offseason just a few days away.
The Giants have an opportunity to cause havoc for their rivals, though, the Los Angeles Dodgers. They would want nothing more to be the reason they aren’t NL West Champions or not go to the postseason at all. Nothing is set in stone for the Dodgers yet, and if the postseason was to start today, they would be playing in a winner-take-all game as a wildcard.
The Cardinals are a game behind the Dodgers for the final wildcard, so that isn’t a lock either. If the Giants play the Dodgers tough and win this series, it’s going to be mighty interesting to see how the standings shake out. The Rockies and Cards just have to be glad that the Dodgers aren’t playing a team that isn’t going to care about playing the Dodgers. The Giants will certainly be up to knock the Dodgers off. Head below for our free Dodgers vs. Giants pick.
L.A. Dodgers vs. San Francisco Giants Pick
Hyun-Jin Ryu (6-3, 2.00 ERA) vs. Madison Bumgarner (6-6, 3.20 ERA)
It hasn’t been a perfect year for Madison Bumgarner, but he gets to finish up the 2018 season against an old foe with a chance to ruin their season. Bumgarner enters Friday night with an ERA of 3.20 and 1.24 WHIP. A lot of pitchers would love to have those numbers and trade places with Bumgarner immediately. However, for a guy who went four straight seasons with an ERA below 3.00, he would probably tell you that he could be better.
It’s been a different story on the road and at home, though. He has an ERA of 1.34 at home compared to an ERA of 4.97 on the road. In his last three starts in San Francisco, he hasn’t allowed a run and that came against some really good offenses. He shutout the Astros, Diamondbacks, and Rockies, all which have highly regarded bats. Note that the Dodgers are hitting just .234 against left-handed pitching.
He will face a challenge against Hyun-Jin Ryu tonight. Ryu returned to action off the DL on August 15th and has been terrific. He hasn’t allowed more than 3 runs in a start and has posted an ERA of 2.21 and 1.18 WHIP. Ryu has been flawless in his previous three starts, with an ERA of 1.50 and 0.94 WHIP. As I noted earlier, the offense has been abysmal for the Giants. They are averaging just 3.75 runs per game for 29th in the majors. In their last ten games they’ve scored just 3.1 runs per and are hitting just .194 against lefties in their last five games. The UNDER doesn’t look like a bad option in this rivalry game.