With a 5-4 Opening Day win Friday, Arizona has now taken nine of its last 11 games against its National League West rivals from the Bay -- a stretch that includes a September sweep during which the D-backs celebrated winning the division as the Giants watched.
Madison Bumgarner gets the ball for San Francisco on Saturday, looking to put a halt to that streak. He'll be countered by D-backs righty Daniel Hudson, who beat the Giants twice down the stretch last season.
Bumgarner, a left-hander splitting the Giants' two All-Star righties in the rotation, pieced together a solid spring that built upon his second-half success in 2011. He posted a 2.62 ERA after June 26 last season.
His counterpart, Hudson, also was effective in the spring when he worked on a slower breaking ball with more bite to complement his fastball and slider. He had some problems in first innings last season, and that, too, is a major focus of his as the season begins.
Kirk Gibson, in his second season as Arizona manager, noted the D-backs are facing a bit of a different Giants squad this year. With the additions of Melky Cabrera, Angel Pagan and Gregor Blanco, he thinks San Francisco will try to exploit its opponents on the basepaths this season.
"Their personnel is much quicker than it has been," Gibson said. "Their manager would like to do that. We're equipped to deal with it, but it will be something different for us to be up against."
Giants: Homegrown in the infield
If Emmanuel Burriss gets the start at second for San Francisco on Saturday, and the Giants keep the remainder of their infield intact, they'll have an entirely homegrown infield -- pitcher and catcher included.
The farm system has been a point of pride within the Giants' organization in recent years, but typically those accolades have come for the pitching staff and not the offense.
Manager Bruce Bochy indicated that Buster Posey will likely catch all three games in the opening series against Arizona. Posey, who played in his first regular-season game since sustaining major leg injuries last May, went 2-for-4 with a walk Friday night.
Posey now has a 14-game hitting streak dating back to last season.
D-backs: Divisional dominance
During their run to the NL West crown last year, the D-backs took advantage of their own division. They were .500 or better against the other four teams within the NL West and combined for a 43-29 record against their divisional foes.
More intradivision dominance would help the D-backs this month as they kick off their 2012 slate with nine games against teams from the NL West.
Center fielder Chris Young batted in the No. 2 hole Friday, coming as something of a surprise after hitting there just once last season and never this spring. It's unclear where Young will hit Saturday, as manager Kirk Gibson noted "it's not going to be that way every day."
In their first five seasons of existence, the D-backs got off to a 2-0 start three times. Since then, in their previous nine seasons, they haven't done so once.
With a win against the Giants on Saturday, Arizona has a chance to win Games 1 and 2 for the first time since 2002. They have won their first three just once, in 2000.
It was a tale of two halves between these two squads last season, as they met nine times before the All-Star break and nine times after it. The Giants took seven of the first nine contests, but dropped seven of nine after the Midsummer Classic.
Only two Giants have faced Hudson more than 10 times. Pablo Sandoval is hitting .417 with two homers in 12 at-bats against the D-backs righty, while Aubrey Huff has struggled, hitting .188 without an extra-base hit.