A former Dodger will be tasked with beating his old team in Game 3.
Alex Wood is set to pitch in Los Angeles on Sunday for the Giants, hoping to swing the series in San Francisco’s favor after Saturday’s loss. He’ll have his work cut out for him, and not just because he has to face the formidable Dodgers lineup. Cy Young candidate Max Scherzer will be on the hill for LA.
The left-handed Wood was probably projected to be next in line, but there was also some thought that the Giants could go with right-hander Anthony DeSclafani. Gabe Kapler didn’t so much say that Wood was getting the ball for any strategic reason beyond the fact that he’s pitched well this season.
“First and foremost he’s pitched really well for us,” Kapler said. “In particular he’s pitched really well for us late. That’s the main consideration. He’s one of our best three pitchers right now.”
Despite a few blips, Wood has indeed been good for the Giants in 2021, posting a 3.83 ERA and 1.18 WHIP in 26 starts, while striking out 152 in 138 2/3 innings. Since Aug. 15 Wood has been even better, not giving up more than two runs in any outing, with the Giants going 5-1 in those games.
Wood faced the Dodgers just once this season, allowing six hits and three runs in five innings while striking out seven in LA. The Giants led 5-2 when Wood exited that game before collapsing in the ninth, on a Will Smith walk-off three-run homer, losing 8-6.