If the matchups in this Padres-Diamondbacks series seem eerily familiar, it’s because we saw them just last week in Petco. When Clayton Richard squared off against Patrick Corbin last Thursday, the Padres were the victors in a 4-1 game thanks to some excellent pitching and home runs from Wil Myers and Austin Hedges along with a two-run Erick Aybar double. Tonight the matchup is renewed in Phoenix, and the Padres are licking their wounds from a tough 7-6 loss in the first game of this four-part series.
Clayton Richard held the Diamondbacks to only one run in last week’s matchup, thanks to eight strikeouts and a double play. He allowed eight hits but didn’t issue a free pass. The Diamondbacks have a bunch of thumpers to launch the ball into the thin desert air, so it will be imperative for the groundballer to keep the ball on the ground. He did that pretty effectively last week, as the only extra base hits of the game were three doubles. With Travis Jankowski on the DL, the outfield defense will be slightly degraded from the corps on the field last week. Jabari Blash was the starter in leftfield last night, but Allen Cordoba may get a starting nod in tonight’s game.
Patrick Corbin gave up three earned runs to the Padres last week on only five hits and no walks. Wil Myers touched him up in the first inning with a solo homer, and doubles from Yangervis Solarte and Erick Aybar did the rest of the damage. Fly balls carry farther in the thin, warm Phoenix air compared to Petco’s damp evening heaviness, so Padres hitters may look to get the ball in the air tonight. Six of the Diamondbacks’ eight relievers saw action in the last two nights, so manager Torey Lovullo may lean on Corbin to go deep into this game to rest his bullpen.
The Padres are now 2-2 on the season against the division rival Diamondbacks. Tonight’s game is the second of a four-game series in Phoenix, and you know that Andy Green would love to take another series from his former franchise. A win off Corbin in last week’s matchup and an exciting comeback last week should give this team plenty of confidence coming into tonight’s game.
Game Time: 6:40 start PDT.
Radio: 94.9FM, XEMO 860AM (Sp.)