Last night's encouraging win put our Padres at .500 on the season. Today they'll get their first chance this season to play for a series sweep and send the Giants packing with nothing to show for their time in San Diego.
Padres pitching has been phenomenal and instrumental in the team's success lately. The staff ranks in the top of the majors with a collective 2.68 ERA this season, and a 1.93 mark in the last 11 games. In that span, the team has gone 7-4 to fight their way back to .500, just two games out of first place. Starting pitchers specifically have posted a 2.26 ERA in those 11 games, a stretch that began two outings ago for today's starter.
Robbie Erlin will get the call in the series finale and will try to build off a decent start to his 2014 season. The lefty was added to the rotation after already pitching a scoreless 2/3 of an inning in relief at the beginning of the season. And he's making sure to take advantage of his opportunity in Josh Johnson's absence. Erlin kept the Indians to one run in six innings in his first start of the season, April 9th in Cleveland. He allowed only four hits and no walks while striking out six. His last time out he struggled a bit against the Rockies, yielding three runs on six hits and a walk in just 4 2/3 innings, though he struck out seven batters along the way. In Erlin's only career outing against the Giants, last September at Petco Park, he gave up two runs in 5 1/3 innings as the Padres went on to win 3-2.
Pitching for the Giants will be Tim Lincecum, who hopes to keep improving on his rocky start to the season. He was decent in his most recent start, giving up just one run on five hits and striking out five through five innings. But his two starts prior to that were not so smooth. He surrendered 11 runs total through 10 innings in two outings against the Diamondbacks. The righty is 7-3 in 14 starts all-time at Petco Park, including last season's no-hitter. Hopefully our Padres can put up a better fight this time around.
Tune in at 1:10 PDT to see if our boys can pull off a sweep and take us back over .500 for the first time since the 1-0 start to the season.