The San Diego Padres are not going down without a fight. With a 9-1 record over their past ten games, San Diego still has a slim chance of sneaking into the final Wild Card spot, but the margin for error is practically zero. The Padres will need help elsewhere if they want a postseason bid, but they will also need to take care of the Giants to start the week, and we’ll preview the series before going over which side I’ll be backing.
While the Padres have been putting themselves in a position to at least luck into a playoff spot, the Giants have been playing their way out of contention. Over their last ten games, San Francisco is 2-8 and will enter this series after losing three out of four to the Dodgers over the weekend. The Giants' 3-2 loss last night gave them the same 77-79 record as the Padres, which means they are five games back of the final Wild Card spot.
San Francisco’s recent offensive struggles remained prevalent last night as they struck out eight times and left 17 runners on base. By scoring just two runs in their losing effort, San Francisco has now scored two or fewer runs in six of their last ten games. As they look to at least end the season on a high note, the Giants will have their ace Logan Webb on the mound tonight, as he enters with a 3.35 ERA in 207 innings of work.
Webb will be facing a Padres lineup tonight that is coming off a 12-2 win over the Cardinals yesterday, which means they’ve scored four or more runs in seven of their last ten games. Juan Soto had the biggest day at the plate for San Diego yesterday, going 3-5 with a double, home run, and four RBIs. In total, the Padres would pick up 18 hits in the game, and that was without the red-hot Manny Machado in the lineup.
The Padres will also have their ace on the mound today in Blake Snell, and if he hasn’t already, the lefty can likely lock up the CY Young with a strong outing. After throwing seven shutout innings in his most recent outing, Snell is now pitching to a 2.33 ERA with 227 strikeouts in 174 innings of work.
The Padres are currently listed as (-115) road favorites, and I’ll be backing them for my play tonight. San Diego has played well when favored this year, going 64-52 straight up, while the Giants are 31-41 when underdogs. San Francisco is also 36-42 following a loss, and now they have to face a Padres team with a lot of momentum and with the probable CY Young on the bump.
Over the last 30 days, the Giants offense ranks 19th in hard hit percentage, 18th in OPS, and 17th in wRC+ against left-handed pitching. They’ll now face a starter in Blake Snell, in the 88th percentile in xBA, 81st percentile in hard hit percentage, and 67th percentile in xERA. San Diego’s bullpen also has the 4th lowest FIP in the league over the past month.
On the other side, the Padres offense is 14th in OPS, 12th in wOBA, and 10th in wRC+ against right-handed pitching in the last month. There is no denying they have a tough matchup on the mound in Logan Webb, but the right-hander is in the 36th percentile in xBA and 9th percentile in hard-hit percentage. Real damage can be done late in the game, though, as San Francisco’s bullpen does have the 12th-highest ERA and 10th-highest hard hit percentage allowed since August 25th.
San Diego Padres (-115)