Giants look to complete sweep of Rockies
SAN FRANCISCO — The San Francisco Giants will attempt to complete their winningest homestand since their 2012 championship season when they go for a series sweep against the Colorado Rockies on Thursday afternoon.
With hard-fought 3-2 and 1-0 victories in the first two games of the series, the Giants improved to 7-2 on their homestand, with one game remaining.
They haven’t had an eight-win homestand since September 2012.
Giants manager Bruce Bochy credited his pitchers, who have held the opposition to three or fewer runs in 10 of their last 13 games, including six of nine on the homestand.
“There’s a large sense of confidence here at home,” he said. “What’s impressive is the pitching here. It’s keeping us in the game.”
Stratton has given up three or fewer earned runs in seven straight starts. That streak includes the May 19 game against the Rockies, when one of the four runs he allowed was unearned.
The 27-year-old has faced the Rockies three times in his career, twice as a starter, and has gone 1-0 with a 4.50 ERA.
The guy who has given him the most trouble has been Charlie Blackmon, who has four hits, including a home run, in seven at-bats against Stratton.
Blackmon had one of the Rockies’ two hits in Wednesday’s loss.
Colorado finds itself in an offensive slump entering the series finale. The Rockies have lost four in a row, having totaled nine runs in those games.
This comes on the heels of having exploded for 37 runs in their previous four games, all wins.
Gray has faced the Giants twice this season, and hasn’t seen the fifth inning either time.
After giving up five runs and nine hits in 3 2/3 innings in the May 19 loss, he was roughed up at home for four runs and six hits in 3 1/3 innings in a 7-4 defeat. He did not get a decision in the latter.
Gray has started five games in his career against the Giants, going 0-2 with a 5.24 ERA. Both losses came in San Francisco.
Gray has struggled this season with Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford, the hero of Wednesday’s win with the third walk-off home run of his career. Crawford has a double and two singles in four at-bats against Gray this season.
Andrew McCutchen also has scorched the 26-year-old in the past, going 7-for-12 with two doubles.
The Giants reached the midpoint of their season with a 42-39 record Wednesday night. That’s a 12-game improvement over last season, when they were already 22 1/2 games out of first place in the National League West.
The Rockies will play their 81st game Thursday. They had 47 wins at the midpoint of the 2017 season, nine more than they have this year.