The Cove
Deep coverage of the Giants

Giants vs. Diamondbacks Series Preview: Elimination

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Tim Lincecum pitches in Sunday's game, but will it matter?

    We've been here before (sweep or go home!) and somehow ended up here again: the San Francisco Giants have to sweep the Diamondbacks or else the playoffs are a pipe dream misting out the window.

    A sweep of the hated Dodgers would have provided some life and instead, losing two of three games results in the Giants sitting six back of the Diamondbacks with six to play.

    In other words, one misstep, one loss and it's over.

    Well, not "over" over, but more or less. The Giants are four back of the Braves in the wild card race and two behind the Cardinals after Thursday's loss.

    Losing to the Diamondbacks would not only end the divisional title hopes but likely wipe away any prayer of the Wild Card race.

    "We dug this hole," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. "We knew what was ahead of us. Now we definitely can't lose a game."

    Taking the mound for the first game of the series is Eric Surkamp -- he's undefeated! -- against Joe Saunders -- he's only 12-12! -- in a matchup that's just a flat-out wild card. (No pun intended.)

    Saturday will feature Matt Cain (12-10, 2.86 ERA) versus Ian Kennedy (20-4, 2.88) and while it's a game the Giants could/should win, Kennedy's been spectacular this year and the Giants hitters have been, um, not. It could be a microcosm of Cain's season (hard-luck loser) or it could be a breath of false hope.

    Sunday, Josh Collmenter will face off against Tim Lincecum. There's no feasible reason why the Giants would lose this game, but it might not matter.

    If it does matter, then the team will sure as hell need to give Lincecum some run support, which is a thing the Giants are very bad at doing.

    So, saddle up for one more ride, folks. Do whatever you need to do to generate some good luck, and don't get off the bandwagon now.

    Weirder things have happened and, in the words of Hunter S. Thompson, when the going gets weird, the weird get pro.