Yesterday the offense was finally able to put together a decent showing, but an uncharacteristically poor outing by Andrew Cashner made it all for naught as the Padres went down in the first game of the series. Today as Jason Marquis takes the mound against his former team for the first time since they traded him, the Padres will try to keep up the offensive output and put an end to their season-long losing streak at last.
Career-wise, Marquis is 5-4 with a 3.51 ERA against Washington, but he hasn't pitched against them since 2009 before his time with the club. This year he is 9-4 with a 3.74 ERA for San Diego, but he's coming off two straight losses in which he gave up a combined 10 runs on 11 hits in 10 2/3 innings. Prior to those two starts, he had gone 3-0 during a five-game stretch of starts in which the Padres were undefeated. His last time out, however, none of his four runs allowed to the Marlins were earned. Though he didn't help his cause by allowing a season-high seven batters to reach base via walk, which has been his biggest problem all season. He leads the majors with 5.35 walks per nine innings
Conversely, Washington starter Jordan Zimmermann's 1.27 walks per nine innings is the third best in the league. Today he'll go for his 13th win to tie Max Scherzer for the major league lead. Nine of his twelve wins this season have come at home, where he is undefeated in his last 21 games. He has won three straight games overall coming into today's matchup, which he should feel confident about. The righty has posted a 1.33 ERA in four career starts against San Diego, but his offense has been stingy in those games, leaving him with just a 1-2 record.
But this offense has been far from stingly lately, scoring eight or more runs in four of their last six games. They've hit seven home runs and 14 doubles during that span with Ian Desmond's .391 average leading the charge. The Padres managed five runs last night after a five-game stretch in which they averaged just one run per game. Everth Cabrera's return to the lineup seemed to help put a spark into the offense and today he'll try to improve on a 2-for-4 career showing against Zimmermann. San Diego has lost 12 of their last 13 games and dropped to fourth place in the division, five and a half games out of first place and just a tenth of a percentage point above the last place Giants.