Mano-a-mano, obviously, anything can happen. Starting pitchers can make magic happen at any time. It should be a good battle between Syndergaard and Bumgarner.
Thor's Achilles' Heel
However, Noah "Thor" Syndergaard, while a great pitcher, has some flaws that the Giants can take advantage of. First off, LHH hit him a lot better than RHH:
- LHH: .250/.305/.398/.703, 3.46 K/BB
- RHH: .222/.255/.334/.589, 8.04 K/BB
Plus, he's much better at home (2.68 ERA) than on the road (3.13 ERA). However, the Giants against him in NY, in two games, 6.17 ERA: 4 runs in 6 IP in 2015, 4 runs in 5.2 IP in 2016. He shut them out in SF though, in his last start against them. Also, he has been not as good in the second half: 2.77 ERA first half, 3.01 ERA second half, while compiling a 3.32 ERA in the playoffs last year (3.50 ERA as a starter), but all three starts were DOM starts.
Bumgarner's A Man
Meanwhile, Bumgarner looks pretty good against the Mets. First off, they are only 19-18 vs. LHP, 68-57 vs. RHP (hence why Bumgarner and not Cueto starting, just for this reason). However, he's better at home than on the road, 2.74 ERA vs. 3.22 ERA on the road.
And one thing some have mentioned is that Bumgarner has not had a good ERA to end the season, as he had a 4.66 ERA over his last 9 starts (most only noted his poor September, but it goes back further than that). However, if you look at the overall numbers, he looks like he's just been having bad luck with the long ball: 9 starts, 56.0 IP, .293 BABIP, great .683 OPS, only 11 walks vs. 62 strikeouts, but what killed him during that period was the number of HR he gave up, 8, which works out to 1.3 HR/9, very high for him. So the long ball would be a sign that this Bumgarner is pitching and not the lumberjack who runs roughshod over the competition.
But the best factor of all is Bumgarner in 4 starts against the Mets in NY: 0.62 ERA, 29 IP (avg 7+ IP per start), 9.6 K/9 and great 3.44 K/BB. And there is also his 0.91 ERA over his last 8 playoff appearances, 59.2 IP (over 7 IP even counting the 5 IP in relief), only 8 walks, 53 strikeouts, only 3 HR given up.
Giants Chances Look Good
I think the Giants look good for winning this game. Bumgarner has pitched great against the Mets in NY all his career so far, as LHP does a number on the Mets strengths. Thor's weakness is that LHH hit him a lot better than RHH do, and Posey and Pence are the only RHH, and both hit RHP pretty well still. But when you get great pitchers going against each other, especially experienced guys - Thor had his hiccup in his first playoff start last season - you just about have to flip a coin as to who wins. Still, Bumgarner has had the Mets number, as do many LHP, and LHH has Noah's number (relatively to RHH), which seems to tilt things in favor of the Orange & Black, though, unfortunately, our LHH has not done that well against Thor, both Posey and Pence have the best OPS against him.