(By e.Chang)

The Week That Was:
Won 1, lost 2 against the Pirates.
Won 1, lost 2 against the Braves.

35-33 for the season; 3rd place in the NL West.

The Week That Will Be:
Mon: at home against the Padres. (Autism Awareness Night)
Tue: at home against the Padres. (Healthcare Night; Native-American Heritage Night)
Wed: at home against the Padres. (America's Cup poster giveaway)
Thu: at home against the Marlins. (Stitch n' Pitch Night)
Fri: at home against the Marlins. (Garlic Fest)
Sat: at home against the Marlins. (Ryan Vogleson bobblehead giveaway)
Sun: at home against the Marlins. (World Champions beach towel giveaway)

The NL West: baseball's boxing ring. Last week, the 1st place Diamondbacks and the last place Dodgers went at it. Pitchers hit batters, players hit each other, the dugouts were emptied, and a good, old-fashioned baseball brawl was had.

And the Dodgers won the game.

The Bums ended up taking two of three from the Diamondbacks. The Snakes then lost three of three against the Padres, who, in the previous week, split a 4-game series against the Rockies. The NL West is Edward Norton in his boss' office in Fight Club, and the Giants couldn't be happier.

Well, they COULD be happier. I mean, no one should be happy being in 3rd place with a 35-33 record, but if that's you, you're glad you're in the NL West because that means you're only 1.5 games out of 1st place. The NL West is most competitive division in baseball--not the best division, mind you, just the most bunched up. Two games is all that separates the 1st place Diamondbacks and the 4th place Padres. Even the last place Bums aren't totally out of the picture--they're only 7.5 games back. By beating up on each other, the NL West has ensured that no one's looking pretty and no one will run away with this thing.

And it continues this week when the Padres come to town for three games. The Padres have won their past six games, and eight of their last 10, and got above .500 for the first time this season with their win yesterday against the Diamondbacks. They're hot and the Giants are not. Thank God Barry Zito will be taking the mound tonight. I never thought I'd ever type that last sentence, but that's the way it's been with Zito this season. Four wins, one loss at home; zero wins, four losses on the road. 1.94 ERA at home; 11.28 on the road.

We have Zito, Cain, and Bumgarner for the Padres series and the Marlins are a little league team. So the plan for the week: fend off the Padres, feast on some marlin, and meet back here in 1st place.