Arizona (51-51) at San Francisco (43-59)

Mostly Cloudy Currently: San Francisco, CA
Temp: 64° F
  • Game info: 9:05 pm EDT Sat Jul 26, 2008
Preview | Box Score | Recap

In the wide open NL West race, the Arizona Diamondbacks have to like their chances with Brandon Webb fronting their rotation.

The San Francisco Giants, meanwhile, can’t be written off completely as long as Tim Lincecum continues his remarkable sophomore season.

Webb looks to win his seventh straight decision against the Giants and keep the Diamondbacks in first place Saturday night when he matches up against Lincecum at AT&T Park.

Webb (13-4, 3.11 ERA) is tied for the NL lead in wins, and ranks near the top of the league in ERA and strikeouts (116). The right-handed sinkerballer has helped keep Arizona (51-51) atop the West, which they lead by one game over the second-place Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Giants (43-59) remain on the outskirts of contention partially because no team in the division has a winning record, but also due to the success of Lincecum (11-3, 2.79). In his first full season in the majors, the 24-year-old right-hander is leading the league with 143 strikeouts while ranking in the top five in wins and ERA.

However, two of Lincecum’s losses have come in his last three starts. He was reached for five runs in six innings of a 7-4 defeat against Milwaukee on Sunday. Lincecum hopes to bounce back as he meets the Diamondbacks, against whom he’s 2-0 with a 2.14 ERA in three career outings.

Webb has been just as effective against the Giants over the last three seasons, going 6-0 with a 2.87 ERA in nine starts, including 2-0 with a 2.57 ERA in two 2008 outings. For his career, he’s 11-5 with a 3.22 ERA against San Francisco.

Webb, who didn’t get a decision in the Diamondbacks’ 6-5 loss to the Dodgers on Sunday despite allowing only one run and six hits in eight innings, could benefit from Arizona’s recent offensive surge. The Diamondbacks have totaled 25 runs in their last three games and had eight different players score in their 10-2 victory over the Giants on Friday night.

“To put up 10 tonight is huge for us,” third baseman Mark Reynolds said. “You get guys on base and anything can happen. That’s what we’ve been doing. We’re doing the little things.”

That’s especially significant for the Diamondbacks on their season high-tying 10-game road trip that began Friday. They haven’t won back-to-back road games since June 6-7, and are 21-29 away from home on the season.

“It’s a very important road trip for us. Everyone knows it,” said Friday’s starter Dan Haren. “It’s nice to set the tone and start off on the right foot, and hopefully go on from here.”

The Giants matched their highest hit total since the All-Star break with 10 on Friday, but stranded eight baserunners and saw their three-game winning streak snapped.

“I thought we had some pretty good at-bats,” said Giants manager Bruce Bochy, whose club owns a league-worst 20-32 home record. “We created a couple of good opportunities. We just let the game get out of hand.”

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Starting Pitchers

B. Webb Tex vs. T. Lincecum SF
22-7 Record 18-5
3.30 ERA 2.62
183 K 265
65 BB 84
1.20 WHIP 1.17


Saturday, Jul 26