After losing nine of 10, including a sweep at the hands of the Rockies at AT&T Park, the Giants swept the Dodgers this week thanks to walk-off wins Wednesday and Thursday.
The three straight wins over Los Angeles shot the Giants all the way up to...last in the NL West. Yes, the defending champions are in last place with a record of 7-10, two-and-a-half games behind the Rockies and three games out of the division lead.
Most of the Giants' struggles have come at the plate, where they have just 35 extra-base hits in 17 games this season and are scoring fewer than three runs per game. Here's hoping a trip to Coors Field can't solve their offensive woes.
Hitters to watch
When discussing San Francisco's offense, you have to start with catcher/first baseman Buster Posey. Posey, like many of his teammates, is off to a slow start in 2015, hitting .250/.333/.350 with a pair of home runs but no doubles or triples. Posey has been a Rockies killer in his career, hitting .373/.441/.615 in 299 career plate appearances against Colorado, with a .412 career batting average at Coors Field.
San Francisco's best hitter this season has actually been outfielder Nori Aoki, who came to the Giants as a free agent after playing with Kansas City last season. Aoki is hitting .315/.375/.397 this year and leads the Giants with 29 total bases.
The only Giant with more than two home runs this season is Brandon Crawford, another Rockies killer with an OPS against Colorado 140 points higher than his career number.
2015 Batting Stats
Pitchers to watch
As they did in San Francisco, the Rockies will miss Giants ace Madison Bumgarner this weekend at Coors Field. The Giants will begin the series with rookie Chris Heston on the mound in Friday's opener. Heston has just 26 major league innings under his belt, the majority of which have come at AT&T Park. Heston has never pitched at Coors Field and a pitcher's first start at altitude is always a dicey proposition.
The Giants' starters for Sunday have considerably more experience. Veteran right-handers Tim Hudson and Tim Lincecum have combined for 316 wins in their careers to go with eight All-Star appearances and Lincecum's two Cy Young Awards.
On the other hand, while I was looking up stats on Hudson and Lincecum, the song "Kryptonite" by 3 Doors Down came on (true story), which I found poetic because both pitchers have the same kryptonite: Coors Field. They have combined to make 22 starts in Denver, pitching 123⅔ innings with a 5.46 ERA and 1.59 WHIP. Hudson, who gets the ball Saturday, has especially struggled, with a 7.29 ERA in his 42 innings at Coors Field.
2015 Pitching Stats
Game 1: Chris Heston vs. Eddie Butler
Game 2: Tim Hudson vs. Jorge De La Rosa
Game 3: Tim Lincecum vs. Tyler Matzek