Can the Giants continue their recent mastery of San Diego? Or can the Pads show some pep, and where might the money be made with our MLB picks on this series?
By: Ron Patrick
San Diego has taken the first two games of this series, after rallying to win Saturday night 8-7 in 12 innings. The Pads trailed 5-0 early, then put up a six-spot in the fourth, helped along by an error, a wild pitch and a walk. San Diego later tied the game in the seventh, then won it in the 12th on another San Francisco error.
So the 8-15 Padres, riding a three-game winning streak, will shoot for a sweep of the 13-11 Giants, who have lost four in a row, in this series finale Sunday afternoon (4:10 pm ET).
Sunday's Betting Lines
As of Sunday morning most books we consulted were listing San Francisco with Ryan Vogelsong at around -120 for today's game, with San Diego and Jason Marquis getting around +110 on the MLB odds boards as home dogs.
Sunday's Pitching Match-up
Vogelsong, who was so good the previous two seasons, is off to an indifferent start to this season. First, he gave up five runs in five-plus innings vs. the Cardinals; then he allowed four runs in six innings vs. the Cubs. He then held the Brewers to three runs through seven innings, and last time out allowed four runs in seven innings vs. the Diamondbacks.
So for the season Vogey has given up 16 ER and 36 baserunners (hits + walks) in 25 1/3 innings.
Last year Vogelsong started four times against San Diego, allowing five ER and 22 hits through 22 innings. The Giants won three of those four games.
Marquis is two-for-four on quality starts this season. Through his first three starts he had allowed five runs and 16 hits through 18 2/3 innings. But last time out, Monday night against Milwaukee, Marquis got bopped for seven runs and a couple homers in less than five innings.
The Padres are 1-3 in Marquis' starts this season.
Last year Marquis started twice against San Francisco, allowing three ER and 12 hits through 13 1/3 innings. San Diego split those two games.
Also, while Marquis is not a strikeout pitcher, he managed to whiff 14 Giants in those 13 1/3 innings last year, while walking just two.
Also, check out my picks on the Pirates vs. Cardinals Series~
Our Take on Sunday's Game
Vogelsong has struggled a bit this season, with a 5.68 ERA, but we still give him the edge in the pitching match-up. And San Francisco doesn't lose five games in a row very often (although that theory didn't work yesterday). So in believing the Giants will avoid getting swept, we'll add them to our list of free MLB picks for Sunday.Pick: Take San Fran at the -115 offered at BET 365
By: Ron Patrick
The homestanding Padres squeaked out a 2-1 win to open this series Friday night, getting a quality outing from starter Andrew Cashner and three scoreless innings from the bullpen.
San Diego won as essentially a pick 'em on Friday night's MLB betting odds, and the game, which didn't see a run scored after the third inning, played UNDER its total of seven.
In fact, the first four games in this rivalry this season have all played UNDER.
So heading into the second game of this series Saturday night (8:40 pm ET) the Giants trail first-place Colorado by two games in the NL West, while the Padres are still 7.5 games out.
Saturday's MLB Betting Odds
As of Saturday morning the best price we could find on San Francisco with Barry Zito was the -107 offered at 5Dimes, while San Diego with Eric Stults was getting +104 at Pinnacle. And most books were lining the total on Saturday's game at 7.5.
Saturday's Pitching Match-Up
Zito is three-for-four on quality starts this season. First, he held the Cardinals scoreless through seven innings; then he held the Rockies scoreless through seven innings; then he got bombed for nine runs in less than three innings vs. the Brewers. But last time out, last Sunday, Zito held these Padres scoreless through seven innings.
So for the season Zito has allowed nine runs (all in that one start) and 23 hits through 23 2/3 innings.
Last year Zito started just once against San Diego and got nicked for four runs in four innings, even though San Francisco eventually won that game 8-7.
Stults began this season with a good outing, throwing five scoreless vs. the Mets, but over his last three starts he's allowed 12 runs and 25 hits in 18 innings. Last time out, against these Giants in that same game Zito pitched last Saturday, Stults gave up three runs in the third inning and a two-run homer in the fifth in a game the Padres lost 5-0.
Last year Stults made four appearances vs. San Francisco, allowing 11 ER and 25 hits in 20 innings.
Our Take on Today's Game
We give Zito the edge in the pitching match-up, and the Giants don't lose four games in a row very often. So we'll add San Francisco to our list of free MLB picks for today.
Free MLB Pick: Take the Giants at the -107 offered at Bet365.
By: Ron Patrick
Giants-Padres Betting Odds
As of Friday AM the best MLB odds we could find for Friday night on San Francisco with Tim Lincecum was the -111 offered at 5Dimes, while San Diego with Andrew Cashner could be bet at +105 at a couple of outlets, including Heritage.
Also, TheGreek was listing the Giants at -130 to win this series, with the home-dog Padres getting +110.
Giants-Padres Series Set-Up
San Francisco just dropped two of three games at home to Arizona, losing the series rubber match Wednesday night 3-2 in 10 innings.
San Diego, meanwhile, just dropped two of three games at home to Milwaukee, avoiding the sweep with a 2-1 victory Wednesday night.
So the Giants, at 13-9, are one game back of first-place Colorado in the National League West, while the Padres, at 6-15, trail already by 7.5 games.
Neither of these teams, as you might expect, have been lighting up the scoreboard lately. San Francisco has scored a total of 26 runs over its last eight games, while San Diego has tallied just eight runs over its last six games.
On the bright side for the Padres, they're finally fielding a lineup that includes both Carlos Quentin and Chase Headley. Quentin recently came off an eight-game suspension for his part in that fracas against the Dodgers a couple weeks ago, while Headley is finally back after missing the start of the season because of a thumb injury.
Friday's Pitching Match-Up
Lincecum, by our standards, is one-for-four on quality starts this year. Through his first three starts he allowed 10 ER on 13 hits and 12 walks in 16 innings. But last time out, last Saturday against these Padres, Lincecum threw six innings of shut-out ball, allowing just four hits, walking only two and striking out eight.
Last year Lincecum started four times against San Diego, allowing 14 ER on 19 hits and 10 walks through 24 2/3 innings. The Giants split those four games.
Cashner, after making five relief appearances, will be making his second start of this season. In his first start, last Saturday vs. these Giants, Cashner allowed two runs and two hits in four innings, walking one and striking out five.
For the season Cashner has given up six runs and nine hits through 13 1/3 innings, with 14 whiffs.
Last year Cashner made two appearances vs. San Francisco, allowing two runs and four hits in 2 2/3 innings.
Giants-Padres Recent History
Last weekend San Fran swept three games from San Diego by scores of 3-2, 2-0 and 5-0. All three of those games played UNDER on the totals.
Last year San Francisco took the season series from their rivals to the South 12 games to six. Also, the totals went a lop-sided 13-5 in this series last year, mainly because, from what we can figure, the totals were consistently listed so low.
Most online sportsbooks are listing the total on Friday's game at seven.
The Giants have beaten the Padres 21 of the last 28 times the teams have met.
Free MLB Pick for Friday
This is a tough one. San Francisco is the better team, but we're leery of giving the erratic Lincecum the advantage in the pitching match-up. Neither team is scoring a lot of runs, and San Diego has its two best hitters back in the lineup. And both bullpens are pretty good.
Then again, the price on the Giants isn't too bad, while those inclined to take the Padres are probably hoping for a little more.
That all being said, in a game that looks to us like darn-near a pick 'em, we'll gamble a bit on the home dog, and add San Diego to our list of free picks for Friday.
MLB Pick: Take the Padres at the +105 offered at Heritage.
Bettors should check back at these pages for updates and more free picks as this series progresses.