Tyson Ross will make his Padres debut tonight as the Padres try to even up the series in Colorado. After competing for the final rotation spot, Ross was named the no. 5 starter after a strong Spring campaign. He went 3-2 with a 2.57 ERA over six games (four starts). At one point he had gone 15 1/3 straight innings without allowing a run. In his final Spring outing, he tossed an inning and a third of hitless ball out of the bullpen against the Rangers. This will be Ross' first ever appearance against the Rockies. Tonight he'll try to get the Padres back in the win column and get his season off to a great start.
But Ross will need the rest of the team to step up tonight after a poor showing in yesterday's home opener at Coors Field. In Colorado's hitter-friendly ballpark, the defense needs to be perfect, unlike it was last night. And the hitters need to take advantage of Coors Field's moon-like atmosphere and get some runs on the board to give Ross some cushion. The team hit 2-for-11 with runners in scoring position and sorely missed Chase Headley's offense, especially considering Jedd Gyorko's disappointing 0-4 performance at the plate in his first game at Coors. Hopefully we will see him break out today and show us his power.
Opposing San Diego will be a familiar face and former Friar, Jon Garland, who is also making his debut for the Rockies tonight. Garland hasn't pitched in the majors for almost two years after having to cut short his 2011 season with the Dodgers to undergo shoulder surgery. He has spent the last year and ten months recovering and rehabbing to prepare himself for his return to the big leagues. Garland spent his Spring with the Seattle Mariners, posting a 2.25 ERA over four starts before being released on May 23rd. On May 24th, he signed a one-year contract with Colorado and became their no. 5 starter. Garland will try to improve on a 2-4 lifetime record over San Diego, against whom he has made seven career starts with a 3.68 ERA.