The St. Louis Cardinals had won three in a row to pick up steam toward their first postseason berth since 2015 only to stumble in their last outing. The Cardinals (84-69) aim to dust themselves off and return to form on Friday when they begin their last homestand of the season with the opener of a three-game series against the San Francisco Giants (72-81).

St. Louis veteran catcher Yadier Molina had an RBI single in Wednesday's 7-3 setback against Atlanta to extend his hitting streak to four games, during which he has one homer and driven in eight runs. The 36-year-old is 3-for-9 versus San Francisco this season and 5-for-17 against Friday starter Madison Bumgarner. The Cardinals are clinging to a 1 1/2-game lead over Colorado for the second wild-card spot in the National League entering the series opener versus the Giants, who answered an 11-game losing skid by winning four of five before dropping an 8-4 decision to San Diego on Wednesday. Aramis Garcia belted his third homer in eight starts in the last outing and has hit safely in nine of his first 10 career contests.

TV: 8:15 p.m. ET, MLB Network, NBC Bay Area (San Francisco), FS Midwest (St. Louis),

PITCHING MATCHUP: Giants LH Madison Bumgarner (6-6, 3.14 ERA) vs. Cardinals RH John Gant (7-6, 3.53)

Bumgarner allowed five hits in six innings versus Colorado in Saturday's 3-0 win to sandwich a pair of scoreless outings around two disastrous ones. The 29-year-old improved to 4-5 in his career versus the Cardinals after yielding four runs on seven hits in 5 1/3 frames in a 13-8 victory on July 8. Bumgarner is returning to the Gateway City for his first start since the 2014 NL Championship Series, when he tossed 7 2/3 scoreless innings to help the Giants advance to the World Series in five games.

Gant saw his seven-game streak of yielding two runs or fewer come to a halt on Saturday, as he allowed six on as many hits in 4 1/3 innings of a 17-4 setback versus the Los Angeles Dodgers. The 26-year-old lamented his inability to find the strike zone, as he walked four in that contest and 18 over his last five outings (28 innings). Gant pitched well against San Fancisco on July 6, permitting two runs on five hits in six innings of a no-decision.

WALK-OFFS

1. St. Louis 1B Matt Carpenter is 0-for-15 with eight strikeouts in his last five games.

2. Giants SS Brandon Crawford, who recorded his 10th three-hit performance on Wednesday, is just 1-for-13 versus the Cardinals this season.

3. St. Louis LF Marcell Ozuna is 6-for-15 with one homer, two RBIs and four runs scored during his four-game hitting streak.

PREDICTION: Cardinals 3, Giants 1  Bet Now

See all the MLB baseball Previews and Predictions


Team Name

AWAY
Steven Okert Pitching order:2
Batting order:2 Slot:2
Position: Reliever (RP)
Reyes Moronta Pitching order:3
Batting order:2 Slot:3
Position: Reliever (RP)
Mark Melancon Pitching order:4
Batting order:6 Slot:2
Position: Reliever (RP)
Tony Watson Pitching order:5
Batting order:6 Slot:3
Position: Reliever (RP)
Madison Bumgarner Pitching order:1
Batting order:9 Slot:1
Position: Starter (SP)
Christopher Shaw Batting order:6 Slot:1
Position: Left Outfield (LF)
Nick Hundley Batting order:5 Slot:1
Position: Catcher (C)
Joe Panik Batting order:2 Slot:1
Position: Second Base (2B)
Alen Hanson Batting order:9 Slot:2
Position: Pinch Hitter (PH)
2nd Position: (2B)
Gregor Blanco Batting order:1 Slot:1
Position: Center Outfield (CF)
2nd Position: (LF)
Gorkys Hernandez Batting order:2 Slot:4
Position: Center Outfield (CF)
Austin Slater Batting order:8 Slot:1
Position: Right Outfield (RF)
Evan Longoria Batting order:3 Slot:1
Position: Third Base (3B)
Brandon Crawford Batting order:4 Slot:1
Position: Shortstop (SS)
Aramis Garcia Batting order:7 Slot:1
Position: First Base (1B)

Team Name

HOME
Tyson Ross Pitching order:2
Batting order:9 Slot:2
Position: Reliever (RP)
Dakota Hudson Pitching order:3
Batting order:9 Slot:4
Position: Reliever (RP)
Jordan Hicks Pitching order:4
Batting order:9 Slot:6
Position: Reliever (RP)
John Brebbia Pitching order:5
Batting order:9 Slot:7
Position: Reliever (RP)
Carlos Martinez Pitching order:6
Batting order:9 Slot:9
Position: Reliever (RP)
John Gant Pitching order:1
Batting order:9 Slot:1
Position: Starter (SP)
Marcell Ozuna Batting order:4 Slot:1
Position: Left Outfield (LF)
Yadier Molina Batting order:6 Slot:1
Position: Catcher (C)
Kolten Wong Batting order:8 Slot:1
Position: Second Base (2B)
Yairo Munoz Batting order:8 Slot:2
Position: Second Base (2B)
Tyler O'Neill Batting order:9 Slot:3
Position: Pinch Hitter (PH)
Patrick Wisdom Batting order:9 Slot:5
Position: Pinch Hitter (PH)
Matt Adams Batting order:9 Slot:8
Position: Pinch Hitter (PH)
Harrison Bader Batting order:7 Slot:1
Position: Center Outfield (CF)
Jose Martinez Batting order:2 Slot:1
Position: Right Outfield (RF)
Adolis Garcia Batting order:2 Slot:2
Position: Right Outfield (RF)
Jedd Gyorko Batting order:5 Slot:1
Position: Third Base (3B)
Paul DeJong Batting order:3 Slot:1
Position: Shortstop (SS)
Matt Carpenter Batting order:1 Slot:1
Position: First Base (1B)

POINT SPREAD Odds 1:50am

960
959
(+1.5) -155
(-1.5) +135

OVER UNDER Odds 1:51am

960
959
O
U
(+7.5) -110
-110

MONEY LINE Odds 1:50am

960
959
+150
-170

Comment about san francisco giants at st louis cardinals preview and predictions