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Arizona Diamondbacks: Ian Kennedy Set to Duel with Tim Lincecum in San Francisco

KANSAS CITY, MO - JUNE 22: Starting pitcher Ian Kennedy #31 of the Arizona Diamondbacks throws against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium on June 22, 2011 in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)
Ed Zurga/Getty Images
Matt BowenAnalyst IIJune 29, 2016

The Arizona Diamondbacks send Ian Kennedy to the mound against San Francisco Giants ace Tim Lincecum Saturday night. This is a must see matchup for any baseball fan. 

The two men are both NL Cy Young candidates and this is easily the best battle in MLB this weekend. 

The Diamondbacks had their nine-game win streak snapped by the Giants Friday night, 6-2.

The Diamondbacks are now 78-60 on the season, with a five-game lead over the Giants in the NL West standings.

This is a make-or-break series for the Giants as they're now playing out of desperation. The Diamondbacks have control of the NL West and don't want to relinquish any ground to the Giants.

After all, the Giants are the defending World Series champions and they won't go down without a fight. The Diamondbacks don't want to give any momentum to the Giants and would really do themselves a lot of good by winning the remaining two games in the series.

Ian Kennedy looks to straighten things out for the Diamondbacks. The pitcher is an NL-best 17-4 with a 3.03 ERA on the season. His last start in San Francisco earned him a victory after eight solid innings. Kennedy is 9-1 in his last 10 starts and hasn't allowed more than three earned runs in any of those outings.

Giants pitcher Tim Lincecum has been the tough-luck pitcher of the year in MLB. He's 12-11 on the season despite his 2.58 ERA, which is fourth-best in the National League.

A microcosm of Lincecum's season has come against the Diamondbacks. In two starts against the divisional foe, Lincecum is 0-1 with a 1.20 ERA, a .80 WHIP and a .140 batting average against.

The Diamondbacks have their work cut out for them against the Tim Lincecum and the Giants Saturday night. A win tonight against San Francisco's best could be the knockout blow that Arizona is looking for. 

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