Giants look to remain on a roll vs. Diamondbacks

MLB

San Francisco ends its season series with Arizona on Monday evening, although the Giants might wish they could play more games against the Diamondbacks as the baseball season heads down the stretch.

With Sunday’s 4-2 win, the Giants are 7-2 against the Diamondbacks this season and have outscored them 43-25.

The Giants look to win the four-game series with Arizona after victories on Saturday and Sunday. While pitching hasn’t been an issue, the Giants’ offense has been prolific all season. Only five other major league teams have scored more than the Giants’ 214 runs in 41 games.

“It’s nice to know that up and down our lineup right now, we have a few guys who can do damage,” Giants manager Gabe Kapler said. “Long way to go, a lot of work to do, but it’s encouraging what we’ve seen our guys do over the last two or three weeks.”

Brandon Belt has six home runs since Aug. 16 for the Giants, who have won eight of their past 11 home games.

“The biggest difference for me is his confidence level,” Kapler said. “That confidence has grown as he’s started to see the ball a little bit longer, make earlier decisions and then drive the baseball. Very comfortable taking a walk if he doesn’t get a pitch. It’s really interesting and kind of heady times. I’ve grown to appreciate his style at the plate.”

Shortstop Brandon Crawford was held out Sunday because of a mild hamstring injury but could be back in the lineup as soon as Monday. And defense helped the Giants in Sunday’s win, with run-saving plays in the field from outfielder Darin Ruf and first baseman Wilmer Flores.

Right-hander Kevin Gausman (2-2, 4.43 ERA) is scheduled to start Monday’s game for San Francisco. For his career, he’s 1-1 with a 3.38 ERA in four games, three starts, against the Diamondbacks.

The Diamondbacks have lost 15 of their past 17 games but haven’t given up postseason hopes. The losses began piling up even before the trading deadline, and now Arizona is trying to win with several new faces on the major league roster following the trades of four veteran players.

“We’re learning how to play with a new group of guys, so to speak. Guys’ spirits are OK. They’re not great. they’re not horrible,” catcher Stephen Vogt said. “I’d say we’re kind of in the middle. It’s been a tough week for us mentally and physically. But we still feel like we can get this thing going.”

The Diamondbacks go with right-hander Zac Gallen (1-0, 1.80 ERA), who has been their most effective starter all season. Gallen has the major league record with 23 games allowing three or fewer earned runs to begin a career, all starts.

Gallen is 1-0 with a 1.00 ERA and a .132 opponents’ batting average over his past four starts. In two career starts against the Giants, both this season, he is 1-0 with a 1.38 ERA.

“We’ve just got to stay in the fight. That’s all I’m asking,” Manager Torey Lovullo said. “Get your feet anchored in the middle of the ring and stand and fight.”

–Field Level Media

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