The series between the San Francisco Giants (94-68) and the Cincinnati Reds (97-65) could be the most competitive out of all of the playoff divisional series. Let's take a better look at the matchups to determine if either team has the upper hand.
Catcher: The Reds usually start(.272, 2 HR, 24 RBI), while the Giants go with (.336, 24 HR, 103 RBI). Having Posey for a full season was the main reason why the Giants are back in the postseason. Advantage: Giants.
First Base: For the Giants, Brandon Belt (.275, 7 HR, 56 RBI) proved that he could be an everyday player in the big leagues this season. Cincinnati's(.337, 14 HR, 56 RBI) is one of the best first basemen in the game today. Advantage: Reds.
Second Base: The Giants' offense picked up when they traded for(.306, 7 HR, 74 RBI) during the summer. Brandon Phillips (.281, 18 HR, 77 RBI) remains the proverbial leader for Cincinnati. Advantage: Reds.
Shortstop: Rookie Zack Cozart (.246, 15 HR, 35 RBI) helped filled a void in the Reds lineup by adding some pop at the shortstop position. Brandon Crawford (.248, 4 HR, 45 RBI) is quickly becoming one of the best defensive shortstops in baseball. Advantage: Even.
Third Base: The Reds found a keeper at third with soon to be NL Rookie of the Year Todd Frazier (.273, 19 HR, 67 RBI). Giants 3B(.288, 12 HR, 63 RBI) still gets the job done at the plate. Advantage: Even.
Outfield: Despite the fact that the Giants lostfor the season, their outfield has a nice balance of speed with Angel Pagan (.288, 8 HR, 56 RBI, 29 SB) and with Gregor Blanco (.244, 5 HR, 34 RBI, 26 SB), which is needed to play defense in the spacious ballpark in San Francisco and power with trade deadline pickup (.253, 24 HR, 104 RBI). The Reds also have some boppers in the outfield with (.275, 26 HR, 80 RBI) and (.252, 34 HR, 99 RBI). Chris Heisey (.265, 7 HR, 31 RBI) and Drew Stubbs (.213, 14 HR, 40 RBI, 30 SB) split time in center field. Advantage: Reds.
Starting Pitching: The Giants have one of the best starting rotations in the majors with(16-5), Madison Bumgarner (16-11), Ryan Vogelsong (14-9), and (15-8). The Reds also have a solid rotation with Johnny Cueto (19-9), Mat Latos (14-4), Homer Bailey (13-10), and Bronson Arroyon (12-10). Advantage: Giants.
Relief Pitching: The Giants have a solid bullpen with two guys that close in Santiago Casilla (25 saves) and in Sergio Romo (1.79 ERA, 14 saves). The Reds boast the best bullpen in MLB with Aroldis Chapman (1.51 ERA, 38 saves) as the closer. Good luck with trying to hit a 103 mph fastball. Advantage: Reds.
After taking an in-depth look at the stats on paper, I am picking the Reds to win this series in five games.