Cubs vs Giants NLDS Preview & Free Pick – Game 3 [10/10/16]

Chicago Cubs (2-0) at San Francisco (0-2)
When: Monday, October 10th 2016
Where: AT&T Park, San Francisco, CA
Time: 9:35 ET | TV: FOX Sports 1

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The Chicago Cubs will look to advance to the National League Championship Series when they visit the San Francisco Giants in Game 3 of the NLDS on Monday. The Cubs took the first two games at Wrigley behind terrific starting pitching and now will have their ace on the mound in Game 3. The Giants mustered just two runs in the first two contests and will be facing elimination tonight. San Francisco has won nine straight elimination games, the longest such streak in major-league history and their streak of 11 straight postseason series victories is on the line. Chicago has gone 2-4 in six games at San Francisco over the last two years and went 46-34 on the road during the regular season. Cubs 1B Anthony Rizzo, who belted 32 homers and knocked in 109 runs during the regular season, went 0-for-7 in the first two games. Cubs 1B Anthony Rizzo, who hit 32 homers and knocked in 109 runs during the regular season, went 0-for-7 in the first two games. The pitching matchup couldn’t get any better with Jake Arrieta opposing Madison Bumgarner.

Pitchers: Cubs – Jake Arrieta (18-8, 3.10 ERA) | Giants – Madison Bumgarner (2016 playoffs: 1-0, 0.00)

Arrieta went 11-3 on the road this season and split a pair of starts against San Francisco while posting a 2.08 ERA. He was 12-2 with a 2.10 ERA through June but split his final 12 decisions, going 2-3 with a 4.60 ERA in September. Arrieta has 40 wins and a Cy Young Award (2015) to his credit over the last two seasons and owns a 4-2 mark with a 1.82 ERA in six career starts versus the Giants. Arrieta has held Buster Posey, Brandon Crawford and Brandon Belt to a combined 2-for-38, but Angel Pagan is 5-for-11 against him.

Bumgarner is 5-1 with one save and a 0.88 ERA in eight appearances over his last two postseasons (2014 and 2016) after shutting out the New York Mets 3-0 in the Wild-Card Game last Wednesday. His postseason career numbers improved to 8-3 with a 1.94 ERA and 0.86 WHIP. Bumgarner cooled off in the second half of the regular season as well, going 5-5 with a 3.80 ERA after posting a 10-4 record and 1.94 ERA before the All-Star break. Bumgarner went 9-4 with a 2.14 ERA at home this year and has fared well against the Cubs in his career going 8-2 with a 2.25 ERA.

The Cubs have the Giants on the ropes and will probably win this series, but like I wrote before last week’s Wild Card game, you can not go against Madison Bumgarner in a big game. This qualifies. The Giants should have better success at the plate now that they’re back home, and it should be just enough to force a Game 4.

Pick: Giants -130

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