For the first game, Carlos Hermandez (1-2, 5.30) will pitch against Brett Tomko (10-6, 4.26), who has been the Giants' best pitcher as of late. Hernandez has only faced three Giants in his career. Marquis Grissom is 0-6 against Hernandez, Edgardo Alfonzo is 1-3, and Deivi Cruz is 0-1.
Against Tomko, who has held a 1.00 ERA in his past five starts, Jeff Bagwell is 12-33 with a double and five jacks. The former Giant, Jeff Kent, is 10-30 with four doubles, and Brad Ausmus is 6-21 with a homerun, but Lance Berkman is just 3-17.
In the second game, there will be a pitching match up of two of the most talented young arms in the league, with Roy Oswalt (18-9, 3.48) taking the mound against Noah Lowry (5-0, 4.09), who's never faced the Astros before in his career.
Michael Tucker is 4-11 against Oswalt, and A.J. Pierzynski is 3-5, but Cruz is just 1-9 and Alfonzo is 2-8. Pedro Feliz is 3-6 with a triple and a homerun, so look for him to start, but J.T. Snow is 0-4, so expect Feliz to start for either Snow or Alfonzo.
For the series finale, Brandon Backe (3-3, 4.45) will pitch for the Astros against the Giants' ace, Jason Schmidt (16-7, 3.24), who was rocked again in his last start. Only two Giants have faced Backe in the past, and both Tucker and Cruz are 0-1 against him. Craig Biggio is 12-36 against Schmidt with four doubles, and Ausmus is 7-21 with a jack. Carlos Beltran is 5-11 with a triple, but Berkman is just 1-11.
Brad Lidge (5-5, 2.08) has been solid for Houston, but he has only faced five Giants in his career. Grissom and Pieryznski are both 1-2 against him, and Alfonzo is 0-3.
One of the MVPs for the second half of the season is Dustin Hermanson (6-6, 4.16), who's still strong since taking over as the Giants' closer. However, the Astros have hit Hermanson well, including Bagwell's 9-24 with four doubles and two jacks, and Biggio's 9-22 with five doubles and a homerun.
Sara Kwan is a writer for SFDugout.com. Got a bone to pick? Just want to say hi? Hit me up: email@example.com.
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