Home » Blog » NL West: Giants Prepare for Reds Series, Posey Wins Award

NL West: Giants Prepare for Reds Series, Posey Wins Award

On Wednesday after their game against the Los Angeles Dodgers (86-75), the San Francisco Giants (94-68) learned they would face the Cincinnati Reds (97-65) in the National League Division Series beginning on Saturday.

On the same day, the team also learned that catcher Buster Posey grabbed the National League batting title. It was the first time since 1942 a catcher had won this honor (Ernie Lombardi).

Game 1 Reds at Giants

The series will kick off Saturday evening in San Francisco. Ironically, the two previous managers who took the Giants to the World Series will be reunited: Dusty Baker (2002) and Bruce Bochy (2010).

For Baker, he has helped the Reds see their second NL Central title in three seasons.

This year, Cincinnati won the season series vs. the Giants 4 to 3 and in April, they won two of three games. In June, the teams went 2-2 in a four-game series on the left coast and all of their meetings included Melky Cabrera and pre- Marco Scutaro and Hunter Pence days.

Matt Cain

For Game 1 in the NLDS series, Giants Matt Cain will face the Reds Johnny Cueto.

Cain, the Giants best pitcher, in 219 1/3 innings has a 2.79 ERA and in the National League, the seventh-best K/BB ratio.

In the regular season, Cain suffered two of his five losses against the Reds, giving up eight runs in 13 innings and four home runs.

In his June 29 game, the Reds snapped Cain’s eight-game win streak. He gave up two home runs including one to Reds pitcher Mike Leake.

As for the Cy Young Award candidate Cueto, he brings a 2.78 ERA and has pitched 217 innings the regular season.

Looking ahead to Game 2, Bochy named Madison Bumgarner as his starting pitcher on Thursday.

Hopefully Bumgarner enters confidently after his June 28 game against the Reds, where he had a one-hitter in his first complete game and shutout in his career, waiting until the sixth inning for the Reds Ryan Hanigan’s to get a leadoff single.

As for the Reds, their pitching rotation includes the following:

Johnny Cueto (Game 1), Bronson Arroyo (Game 2) and Mat Latos (Game 3). If there’s a Game 4, Homer Bailey may get the nod.

As for Game 3, Latos could pitch against either Tim Lincecum or Ryan Vogelsong. On Sunday, the struggling Lincecum learned he will have a place in the series rotation, possibly in Game 3 or Game 4. He was a bit of a hard sell with his 10-15 season and 5.18 ERA but the player is happy to do what he can for the team.

And then there’s Barry Zito who had a great September (4-0, 3.03 ERA) and sole October start but as of Tuesday, Bochy hadn’t said whether the veteran had earned a spot in the series rotation.

In response to his reluctance to name his Game 3 pitcher, Bochy said, “More than anything it’s really vital for us to have all hands on deck here the first two games.  If we want to use some guys in the rotation early here, then we’ll do that. We wanted to keep our options open.”

This is only the beginning for the two teams’ month of October but the bettors see a bright future for the Reds; they have 2 to 1 odds to win the NL Pennant while the Giants sit at 3 to 1.

As for bringing home the World Series Pennant, the Reds sit at the top with 5 to 1 odds.

Shout out to Posey

Buster Posey

In addition to earning the hitting honor–a unique one for a catcher–Posey played in pain throughout the long season with a leg injury. He didn’t let it get in the way and upon learning about his award, Posey was very humble about it.

He said, “I don’t think it’s something I ever thought about doing. It’s such a long season, and from Day 1 you grind out at-bats. You have a lot of responsibility on defense (as a catcher) and you’re going to get nicked up. It’s a grind. You have to realize you’re going to play uncomfortable and sometimes even a little hurt.”

For the season, Posey had a .408 on-base percentage, 24 home runs and 103 RBIs.

What’s next? Possibly the MVP Award. Posey has 5 to 4 odds to bring it home.

  • 100%