SAN DIEGO, CA - JULY 18: Starting pitcher Clayton Richards #33 of the San Diego Padres throws the ball in the first inning of the game against the Houston Astros at Petco Park on July 18, 2012 in San Diego, California. (Photo by Kent C. Horner/Getty Images)
After locking up their third straight series last night, our Padres made the Happy Flight to San Francisco for a three-game set against our Bay Area rivals. Clayton Richard will make his 21st start of the season, seeking his eighth win. His last time out, he was just two outs away from a complete game when he was taken out to let the bullpen secure his victory. He has been an incredibly strong starter for our Padres lately. He made a couple of mistakes in his last outing which cost him four runs to the Astros, but he was given more than enough run support to earn the win, and he'll be looking for our offense to come through once more as he takes on a much tougher opponent in the Giants.
San Francisco's starter, Ryan Vogelsong, has been strong in his 17 starts this season and has been handsomely rewarded. After spending spring training and part of the season rehabbing from back issues, he is now 7-4 with 14 quality starts and has lasted six or more innings in each of his appearances. And the Giants have won 11 of his last 13 starts, boasting a 12-5 record with him on the mound. They will be looking to extend their 1 1/2 game lead in the NL West while our Padres will look to close the gap and gain a game in the standings.
#Padres lineup: Amarista CF, Forsythe 2B,Headley 3B, Kotsay LF, Grandal C, Alonso 1B, Venable RF, Cabrera SS, Richard P— Andy Masur (@PadsCast) July 23, 2012
Both San Francisco and San Diego are riding hot streaks right now. The Giants are 7-2 since the All Star Break and our Padres are 7-3. The road to October will look a little less bumpy if we can continue to fight for wins and get to the Giants this series.
GO FRIARS!! KEEP THE FAITH!!