Our Padres wrap up their quick three-game series and homestand against the Rockies this afternoon before taking off on the road again for the next 11 days. They've already locked up the series win with exciting victories the past two nights, so today they go for the sweep against the NL West foes and inch even closer to that second Wild Card spot.
For the series finale, it'll be Ian Kennedy on the mound, looking for his first win in three tries. The right-hander went 3-0 in July and put together some of his best pitching performances of the season. But since the beginning of August he's gone 0-1 despite allowing only three runs (two earned) in 11 combined innings of work while striking out 12 along the way. If the past is any indication, an outing against Colorado may be just what Kennedy needs to break the seal on the month and snatch that first August victory. In his last seven starts opposite the Rockies, he is 3-1 with a 2.30 ERA. The most recent of those appearances was just last month. Kennedy threw seven innings of one-run ball, allowing only four hits and two walks while fanning nine, to earn himself the win.
Add to that the timing of this matchup and Kennedy's got a recipe for success. The Rockies have lost 20 of their last 26 games overall, 22 of their last 25 on the road, and 7 of their last 9 at Petco Park. The Friars, meanwhile, are riding a four-game overall winning streak and five-game home winning streak.
And today they'll face Tyler Matzek, who isn't having the smoothest rookie season and has especially been struggling lately. Over his last six outings, Matzek has gone 1-4 with a 6.09 ERA, and the Rockies are just 2-9 in his starts this season. He pitched against Kennedy in that July matchup (his only previous career start against San Diego) giving up five earned runs on eight hits and four walks. He enters today's game having lost three straight appearances, a streak which began with an extra-inning relief outing from the rookie. He came in to the 16th inning of a game against theCubs and got 2/3 of the way through the frame before surrendering the winning run. In two starts since then he's given up 11 runs on 14 hits (three homers) through a combined nine innings of work.
If you can't make it out to the ballpark today, come join us in the game thread as we cheer on our Friars to a sweep! Game time is 3:40 PT.
And don't forget to check out today's SB Nation Fantasy Baseball league on FanDuel. It's $2 to join and first prize is $1,500. There's also an MLB Squeeze (Late Night) league with a first prize of $1,200 if you miss the first one. You can join at this link.