The final month of baseball's regular season is here, and the Arizona Diamondbacks are closer to mathematical elimination from the postseason than they might have hoped to be at this point. So with a three-game series against the San Francisco Giants beginning Monday, the D-backs can play spoiler and perhaps help the Los Angeles Dodgers make a tighter race of the NL West in the process.
Arizona is 10 1/2 games out of first place in the division, 6 1/2 out of a wild card. Charging back in the final month to get to the playoffs has happened plenty of times before, but the D-backs are 2-8 in their last 10 games and if not for an 11-inning win Friday, would be 1-9.
The Giants have a little cushion of a lead in the division and it is theirs to lose. Obviously they need to keep winning to lock up the postseason sooner than later. With a 76-58 record, the Giants are 10 games away from equalling their 2011 win total and are coming off a 5-1 road trip to Houston and Chicago.
Patrick Corbin takes the mound Monday for the Diamondbacks, who defeated the Giants five time in September of 2011. Arizona is 26-22 against division opponents this season.
Barry Zito (10-4) opens for the Giants. On Tuesday it's Ian Kennedy vs. the Giants' Ryan Vogelsong, and Wednesday it's Trevor Cahill against a starter to be determined for San Francisco.