The four-game series between SoCal NL West rivals concludes today at Petco Park. The Dodgers put an end to the Padres' eight-game home win streak yesterday with their 6-1 victory. This afternoon, San Diego will give the ball to Andrew Cashner to try to prevent a series split and get another winning streak started.
Cashner has settled in nicely since joining the rotation. He's pitched six or more innings in eight straight starts, and the Padres will need another long outing from him after the bullpen pitched 3 1/3 innings last night and pitching nine full innings Friday night. Cashner is 5-3 overall, but 4-1 at home as a starter this season. This will be his first career start against L.A., but he's made 11 previous relief appearances against them, going 0-1 with a 2.25 ERA.
The Dodgers will look to Chris Capuano to take one for the team by toeing the rubber on just three days' rest. He came off the DL, for the second time this season, on Wednesday and started against the Yankees. He threw 83 pitches through six scoreless innings for his second win of the season. Capuano had three outings (two relief appearances and one start) against the Padres in April, prior to his first DL stint of the year. He combined for 2 2/3 shutout innings out of the bullpen, but less than a week later gave up five earned runs in just two innings of work as a starter.
A loss by the Padres today would give the Dodgers their first pair of consecutive victories since June 6th-7th. San Diego comes into today's contest just 3 1/2 games back in the division. The high level of competition within the NL West has caused the Padres, Rockies, and Giants to constantly switch places and leapfrog each other in the 2nd through 4th place spots in the standings while the Dodgers have remained in the cellar. Six games now separate San Diego and Los Angeles, but hopefully the Padres can make it seven games and at the very least hold on to third place for another day.