It’s an off day for the San Francisco Giants, as they head out on a lengthy, 10-game road trip—tied for their longest voyage of the year. So, let’s take a look at who the Giants will be facing, as they look to continue building on their lead in the National League West.
The past few days I’ve been touting the starting rotation amazing run of quality starts: in the past 14 games, they’ve had 13 of them, which happens to be how many games the Giants have won in that time.
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The trend is in grave danger this weekend, however, since Matt Cain, Madison Bumgarner and Johnny Cueto will be toeing the rubber in Colorado. That’s of course no slight against the pitchers, just the nature of the mile-high yard they’ll be pitching in.
Then again, not every game at Coors Field results in a football score. The way the Giants starters have been shutting down opponents the past couple weeks, it might take more than high altitude to disrupt their rhythm. And if the Giants’ bats don’t wake up this weekend, Colorado fans could be in for some uncharacteristically low-scoring games.
The Rockies will be motivated. While the Giants are beginning a long road trip of the year, the Rockies will be coming off a longest-of-the-season trip of their own. It’s been a rough one, in which they have lost six of eight (they wrap up their eastern journey with a game at Boston today), so they’ll be hoping their return home remedies their losing ways—and springboards them back into the divisional race.
After staying tight atop the NL West standings with the Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers through the first five weeks or so, they’re now seven games behind San Francisco. Los Angeles is 4½ games back.
If the Giants can continue their winning ways in Colorado, it will likely continue at their next stop, too: a four-game set with the lowly Atlanta Braves, probably the worst MLB team since the 2003 Tigers squad that lost 119 games. (The Braves are on the exact same win-loss pace.) Stranger things have happened, but it would be a big surprise if the Giants didn’t take at least three games in Atlanta, before heading St. Louis for the most challenging series of the trip.
The Cardinals’ 24-23 record isn’t great, but they lead the National League in scoring and having the pitching talent to compete.
The Giants could very well take two of three from the Rockies, three of four from the Braves (if not all four games), and then battle the Cardinals in a rubber match when they face off June 5 on Sunday Night Baseball. San Francisco’s record stands at 30-19 heading into the trip. Expect it to be around 37-22 when they return home.