The Arizona Diamondbacks are staring at a tough stretch of schedule and need to take care of business this weekend at home against the worst team in the National League West. The Diamondbacks will try to put one in the win column when they host the San Francisco Giants in the opener of a three-game series on Friday.
Arizona leads the NL wild card race but is in a tight battle with the Colorado Rockies for that top spot and will play nine straight games against the major league-best Los Angeles Dodgers and Colorado after finishing up with the Giants. The Diamondbacks took three of four from the New York Mets this week but only scored more than three runs in one of those contests and is averaging 3.3 in their last 12 games. San Francisco is sitting at the bottom of the standings but is trying to throw a wrench in the NL postseason race and did just that by taking two of three from the Milwaukee Brewers this week. The Giants will try to hold the Arizona offense down with left-hander Ty Blach while the Diamondbacks send ace Zack Greinke to the mound on Friday.
TV: 9:40 p.m. ET, NBCSN Bay Area (San Francisco), FSN Arizona
PITCHING MATCHUP: Giants LH Ty Blach (8-9, 4.59 ERA) vs. Diamondbacks RH Zack Greinke (14-6, 3.16)
Blach was rocked in each of his last two starts, allowing a combined 12 runs and 17 hits in 11 1/3 innings to suffer losses to the Miami Marlins and Philadelphia Phillies. The 26-year-old enjoyed a run of three straight starts yielding two runs and going at least seven innings previous to falling off of late. Blach made three appearances out of the bullpen against Arizona in April and surrendered a combined three runs in two innings.
Greinke is struggling of late as well and was reached for five runs - four earned - on seven hits and four walks in four innings at Minnesota on Saturday. The All-Star is just 1-2 with a 5.01 ERA in four starts this month. Greinke made his season debut against San Francisco on April 2 and did not factor in the decision while allowing two runs and four hits in five innings.
1. Giants RF Hunter Pence (left hamstring tightness) was out of the starting lineup the last two games and is day-to-day.
2. Diamondbacks RHP Randall Delgado (elbow inflammation) is scheduled to throw a bullpen session on Friday.
3. San Francisco SS Brandon Crawford is 11-for-27 with two homers and six RBIs during his eight-game hitting streak.
PREDICTION: Diamondbacks 4, Giants 3