The Upcoming Dodgers Series

Tonight, the Giants begin a three-game series against the Dodgers. San Francisco currently has a four and a half game lead in the NL West, so at worst, they’ll exit this series with a one and a half game lead. These next three games are obviously crucial: after this, the Giants’ only remaining series against the Dodgers is a three-game set in Los Angeles that will take place on the final three days of the regular season.

The goal, presumably, is that the Giants would enter that final series having already clinched the West — effectively rendering those games meaningless. In order to do that, the Giants would need a lead of at least three and a half games at that point (or rather, four, since the Giants and Dodgers will have played an equal number of games by the beginning of October). If the Giants can manage to win one — just one — of these next three home games against the Dodgers, then the Giants will exit this series with a three and a half game lead; and if they can keep Los Angeles at such a distance for the remainder of the year, they’ll clinch before that final series.

But the Giants have an opportunity to do so much more than that, and they should be focused on seizing that opportunity. Imagine, for a second, that the Giants sweep. It’s unlikely, even on their home turf, but let’s not forget that they did that the last time they played the Dodgers — and that was in Los Angeles, no less. If they do happen to sweep, playing really good baseball over the next three days and coming away with the win each time, then they’ll have brought their lead up to seven and a half games. Seven and a half games with 22 left on the schedule — or, in the Dodgers’ case, 21 games. Not too shabby. That would basically ensure that, barring an utter collapse, they run away with the division.

And take a look at the Dodgers’ schedule. While the Giants are bouncing around in their own division, facing the likes of Arizona, San Diego, and Colorado, the Dodgers have to play four at home against St. Louis, three on the road at Washington, and three on the road at Cincinnati.

The Giants need only keep the Dodgers at a comfortable distance, but they have a chance to push them away to “collapse’s length” over the course of these three games, and they should absolutely go for it. Why be content with one or two wins? It’s time to get greedy. This is the Giants’ chance to place a padlock on the division.

Here are the probable pitchers…

Friday: Josh Beckett v. Tim Lincecum
Saturday: Chris Capuano v. Matt Cain
Sunday: Clayton Kershaw v. Barry Zito

Okay, so the Giants might need some help winning that final game; let’s hope a little luck comes their way.

5 thoughts on “The Upcoming Dodgers Series

  1. It’s time to Stab the Heart!

    I want to see Hunter Pence have his seminal Giants vs. Dodgers moments. It’s his second chance to display some power against the nemesis.

  2. The player to watch is Sandoval. The Giants have been critical about his weight and ethic in the media, but as I see it the biggest question is what happened to his power. His dominant side is left and that’s where he suffered the hamate bone injury this year. Last year’s was from the right, and he recovered with almost no symptoms. Sandoval has shown even when fat, he can be an productive hitter, but right now he’s not intimidating anyone.

  3. They just won the third game of the set and finish the series with a 5.5 game lead. I’m feeling really good about their likelihood of winning the division. The playoffs scare me at this point, thinking about having to face the Nats, Reds, and possibly the Braves. Those are some damn good teams.

  4. Giants take the series, and looked pretty good doing so. Shame about Saturday’s game, they should have had that one too. Oh well, that’s the way it goes in baseball. Whatever the case, don’t take the foot off the gas at this point boys……you need all you got to keep that momentum for the postseason going.

    As for possible postseason opponents? Yeah, all the teams that are on their way to being in are definitely good, and scary to boot. However, they’ve got to cringe at our pitching staff, 1-run game stats, and Hitting with RISP since the Break. They are scared too.

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