The off day wasn't enough to refresh the Padres offense and another solid outing by Andrew Cashner went to waste last night as the ineptitude at the plate continued. Tonight our Friars look to avoid a fourth straight loss by putting together some runs behind the pitching of Ian Kennedy.
The right-hander has been the most consistent pitcher on the staff this season and, though he lacks the flash and excitement brought to the mound by Andrew Cashner or Tyson Ross, Kennedy has become a reliable part of the Padres staff. He's allowed one run in each of his last two outings, the most recent of which was his strongest showing of the season. He kept the Nationals to three hits and didn't walk a batter, collecting nine strikeouts in seven innings en route to a 4-2 road win. Today's matchup will be his third against his former team since he was traded to San Diego last August. His prior two appearances against them yielded contradicting results. At Arizona he surrendered six runs and walked five in 4 1/3 innings, but a few weeks later he limited them to just two runs in seven innings at home.
Opposing Kennedy will be Brandon McCarthy, who will try to bring the Diamondbacks their third straight victory and avoid a career-high sixth straight losing start. Looking at McCarthy's numbers this season, you'd think he was a Padres pitcher. Despite giving up only three earned runs over 12 innings in his last two starts, he's been unable to attain that first win. Dbacks hitters have provided just a single run of support over his last four outings, a trend that we can only hope will continue this afternoon when he takes the mound at Petco Park. Last year the right-hander faced the Padres three times. He kept them to one run over 14 frames in his first two starts, but allowed four runs over six frames in his most recent.
Head down to the ballpark or tune in at 5:40 PDT to see if our Friars can even up the series.