Fan’s Preview: Will Giants Get Chance to Clinch NL West on Saturday Against Padres?

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With a 5-1 win over the San Diego Padres, the San Francisco Giants could be just one day away from the National League West title. Possessing a magic number of two, the Giants have easily reached the point of the season where it's a matter of when, not if, the Giants guarantee their playoff spot. If they want to make a Saturday win their most rewarding one of the season, the Giants would require some help from a team they may face in the NL Divisional Series.

Before the Giants' Saturday night game, the Dodgers will face the NL Central-leading Cincinnati Reds. If Cincinnati's Mat Latos can lead his team over the Dodgers' Stephen Fife, the Reds would not only win their division but leave the Giants only one win away from their own pennant. If this scenario plays out, the Giants would be the second team to become division champ this season.

If the Dodgers lose to the Reds, Madison Bumgarner will have the first crack at leading San Francisco to the pennant-clinching win. Going 3-0 with a 3.29 ERA in his last six starts against San Diego, he may have found his way back on track after a solid start against the Colorado Rockies on September 17. In just his sixth career major league start, San Diego's Andrew Warner will face the Giants for the first time in his career, like Friday's starter Casey Kelly, and look to spoil the possible celebration.

Matchup:

The San Francisco Giants will host the San Diego Padres at AT&T Park located in San Francisco, CA on Saturday, September 22, 2012 at 6:05 p.m. PT. This will be the second game in a three-game series.

Season series:

Giants lead series 9-4.

Standings:

San Diego comes into the matchup with a 72-79 record and in fourth place in the National League West. They are 32-44 when playing on the road and have won six of their last 10 games.

San Francisco enters the game with an 88-63 record and in first place in the National League West. They are 45-31 when playing at home and have won nine of their last 10 games.

Starting pitcher matchup:

San Diego: Andrew Werner

2012 season: 2-1, 3.68 ERA, 1.13 WHIP, 28 Ks

Career numbers vs. Giants: No statistics

Career numbers at AT&T Park: No statistics

San Francisco: Madison Bumgarner

2012 season: 15-10, 3.26 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, 181 Ks

Career numbers vs. Padres: 3-2, 3.17 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, 55 K

Career numbers at AT&T Park: 18-12, 3.07 ERA, 1.17 WHIP, 237 Ks

Where to watch and listen to the game:

The game can be watched and heard live locally at the following:

In San Diego: MLBN, FSSD & KPRS 1090

In San Francisco: MLBN, CSN-BA HD, KNBR 680 & KTRB 860

Pitching statistic leaders:

San Diego: Clayton Richard - 14 wins, Huston Street - 0.75 ERA, Edison Volquez - 166 strikeouts

San Francisco: Matt Cain and Madison Bumgarner - 15 wins, Sergio Romo - 1.92 ERA, Matt Cain - 185 strikeouts

Sources:

Bumgarner looks to push Giants closer to title, MLB.com

Padres-Giants Preview, AP

More from this contributor:

Giants Can Clinch NL West Pennant During Padres Series: Fan's Preview

Giants Look to Improve Magic Number Against Returning Jorge De La Rosa: Fan's Preview

Giants' Matt Cain Goes for Career-High 15th Win Against Rockies: Fan's Preview

San Francisco Giants' Tim Lincecum Looks to Continue Roll Over Colorado Rockies: Fan's Preview

Madison Bumgarner and Jhoulys Chacin Meet Again in San Francisco: Fan's Preview

Austin Chang is a lifelong San Francisco Bay Area native, baseball fan, and supporter of the San Francisco Giants. Follow this Featured Contributor on Google+ and Twitter @_austinchang.

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