Giants try to keep postseason hopes alive vs. Diamondbacks
SAN FRANCISCO — Paul Goldschmidt and Madison Bumgarner will continue their eight-year rivalry Tuesday night when the Arizona Diamondbacks and San Francisco Giants meet on the second day of an important three-game series.
The Giants kept their flickering playoff hopes alive Monday night when the shutout pitching of Chris Stratton and home run hitting of Steven Duggar combined to give San Francisco a 2-0 win in the series opener.
The win was more rewarding for the Giants than the loss was damaging for the Diamondbacks.
Fourth-place San Francisco (66-67) gained a game on first-place Arizona (72-59) in the National League West, moving within seven with still 29 to play. The Giants also picked up a half-game on Milwaukee (73-59) in the chase for the second NL wild-card spot, with the Brewers retaining a 7 1/2-game advantage.
“You still have to get on a nice roll,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said after his team’s third straight win. “Yeah, it’s an uphill climb, but you look at the history of the game, crazier things have happened. You never quit.”
The Diamondbacks, meanwhile, were able to hold onto first place in the West because the second-place Colorado Rockies (71-60) were beaten by the Los Angeles Angels. Arizona leads Colorado by one game and the third-place Los Angeles Dodgers (70-61) by two.
Bumgarner (5-5, 2.88 ETA) will attempt to get the Giants another game closer to the Diamondbacks when he duels Arizona right-hander Clay Buchholz (7-2, 2.25) on another scoreboard-watching night for both teams.
Bumgarner has split decisions in two starts against the Diamondbacks this season, allowing a total of just three runs in 11 innings. His career record in 32 games, including 31 starts, against Arizona now stands at 10-11 with a 2.58 ERA.
The 11 losses are the most the four-time All-Star has against any team.
Much of the blame for that falls upon Goldschmidt, who has faced Bumgarner more times in his career than any other pitcher.
The head-to-head advantage has gone to the Arizona slugger, who has 21 hits, five doubles, three home runs, 10 RBIs, 10 walks, a .333 batting average and a 1.006 OPS in 74 plate appearances.
The 21 hits and 10 walks are the most Bumgarner has allowed to any opponent, while the 10 RBIs rank second and the three homers tied for third.
Goldschmidt also has left his mark on AT&T Park, where he ranks first among all active Giants opponents in home runs (11) and RBIs (48), and second in doubles (21). He’s hit .329 at the ballpark.
Stratton held Goldschmidt without a hit in Monday’s series opener, but the Arizona clean-up hitter drew a ninth-inning walk to extend his streak of reaching base at least once to 39 straight road games.
Like Bumgarner, Buchholz has pitched well in two outings against the Giants this season, giving up just four runs in 12 innings. He got a win and a no-decision in the games, leaving him with a 1-0 record and 2.77 ERA in three career starts against San Francisco.