In Game 1 on Thursday it will be Derek Lowe going for the Braves while Tim Lincecum gets the ball for the Giants.
Braves – Atlanta finished the regular season at 91-71. They enter the playoffs as the National League Wild Card and that means they start on the road. That is bad news if you like Atlanta because they are a far better team at home than on the road. Atlanta will be going with Lowe, Tommy Hanson and Tim Hudson in the first three games of this series. Hudson is their best pitcher but he pitched on Sunday so the Braves had no real choice but to push him to Game 3.
Giants – San Francisco finished the season at 92-70 as they won the National League West, just barely over the San Diego Padres. The Giants are led by a powerful pitching staff led by Lincecum and Matt Cain. They will go in the first two games of this series and San Francisco is favored to win both of those games.
The Braves won the season series against the Giants, taking four of the seven games. Looking at more stats for Thursday’s game we notice that the Braves are 2-5 in their last 7 playoff road games. The Braves are 1-4 in their last 5 games as an underdog. And the biggest problem for Atlanta is that they are 1-5 in their last 6 road games. The one positive for Atlanta is that they are 6-0 in Lowe’s last 6 starts. The Giants are 8-2 in their last 10 home games vs. a right-handed starter. They are 5-2 in their last 7 games as a home favorite. The problem if you like the Giants is that they are 3-8 in MLB betting in their last 11 Divisional Playoff games. The Giants do have Lincecum though and they are 5-1 in his last 6 starts.
Low Total – the baseball betting total on this game is low as neither team has much of an offense. SBG has the total at 6.5 and that seems about right with Lowe and Lincecum on the mound.