The San Francisco Giants are set to kick off arguably their most important series of the season against the Chicago Cubs.
With the Chicago Cubs coming to town for a three-game series, the red-hot San Francisco Giants will have a chance to show they belong in the same conversation as one of the National League’s top contenders.
Despite taking three of four against the New York Mets in their last series, the Giants struggled at times to get anything going offensively, with all three victories coming in low-scoring, extra-inning games.
Things won’t get any easier against a Cubs team that ranks ninth in the majors with a 4.06 ERA as a team.
Ahead we’ll take a look at how San Francisco Giants hitters have fared against the three projected starters for the Chicago Cubs over the course of their careers.
Monday starter: Alec Mills
- No head-to-head stats
With Cole Hamels battling a strained oblique, the Cubs promoted Alec Mills from Triple-A for his season debut last Tuesday. He allowed five hits and three earned runs with six strikeouts in six innings of work in a no-decision against the Cincinnati Reds.
The 27-year-old has just 27.1 career innings under his belt at the MLB level, so it’s not surprising that no one in the San Francisco Giants lineup has faced him before.
Tuesday starter: Yu Darvish
- Stephen Vogt: 7-for-26, 6 K
- Kevin Pillar: 0-for-3
- Buster Posey: 0-for-3
- Pablo Sandoval: 0-for-2, 2 K
- Brandon Crawford: 0-for-2, K
Backup catcher Stephen Vogt saw plenty of Yu Darvish when he was playing for the Oakland Athletics and Darvish was pitching for the Texas Rangers. Aside from the injured Evan Longoria (3-for-18, 2 2B), he’s the only player on the roster with a hit against Darvish.
Wednesday starter: Jon Lester
- Buster Posey: 6-for-19, 2 2B, HR, K
- Brandon Crawford: 4-for-14, 2 2B, 2 K
- Joe Panik: 1-for-9, 2B, 3 K
- Brandon Bet: 0-for-9, 2 K
- Kevin Pillar: 2-for-8
- Pablo Sandoval: 0-for-6, 3 K
- Alex Dickerson: 1-for-3
- Stephen Vogt: 0-for-3
This seems like a prime opportunity to give Brandon Belt an off day, so expect to see Tyler Austin manning first base in the series finale. Jon Lester has a 2.70 ERA with one complete game in three career starts at Oracle Park.
The series kicks off on Monday night, as the Giants look to stay hot and move above the .500 mark in their pursuit of a wild-card spot.