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Arizona Diamondbacks vs. San Diego Padres series preview

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports


The San Diego Padres enter Friday coming off their second off day this week, which is something the team certainly appreciated considering the lack of off days in the first half of their schedule. San Diego's last game ended painfully, as Mark Melancon couldn't hold a two-run lead with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning against the Oakland Athletics. Matt Olson would hit a walk off double in the tenth inning to give the Friars a series split.

Moving to this weekend, the Padres get to welcome back the friar faithful to Petco Park for a three-game series against the Arizona Diamondbacks. While the Padres have already gotten to the 60-win threshold, Arizona has yet to win 40 games this season. Their roster won't look the same, as their lone All-Star, Eduardo Escobar, was dealt to the Milwaukee Brewers before the trade deadline last month.

Fernando Tatis Jr. will miss the entire series (left shoulder subluxation) but could return at some point next week if the soreness goes away and his range of motion is back to where it was prior to the dislocation.

Friday, August 6 (7:10 pm PT): Caleb Smith (ARI) vs. Ryan Weathers (SD)

TV: Bally Sports San Diego, Radio: 97.3 The Fan

Caleb Smith enters Friday's series opener with a 5.04 ERA with just under 100 strikeouts on the season. The Padres are catching Smith at the right time, as he has allowed five or more runs in four of his last five starts, including July 10 when he gave up nine runs in one inning to the Dodgers.

Smith isn't the only starter who struggled in his last start. Ryan Weathers, who will also be toeing the rubber on Friday night, gave up eight runs including three home runs last Friday night at home against the Colorado Rockies. Weathers is one of those pitchers who isn't afraid to attack the zone regularly so when he doesn't have his command, it can lead to hard contact as we saw last Friday. We'll see if Weathers can pitch like he did in Miami two outings ago when he pitched a four inning shutout.

Saturday, August 7 (5:40 pm PT): Taylor Widener (ARI) vs. Yu Darvish (SD)

TV: Bally Sports San Diego, Radio: 97.3 The Fan

Taylor Widener, like most Diamondbacks starters, has struggled to keep opponents from getting to him early. The 26-year-old has surrendered 15 combined runs in his last three starts and didn't go past 4.2 innings in those three starts. Eric Hosmer enters Saturday hitting .500 off Widener with a home run.

Yu Darvish usually doesn't belong in the category of "struggling starters" but his stat lines the last few starts would put him in that group. Going into the All-Star break, Darvish was clearly the Padres' ace. He didn't make the trip to Denver because he wanted to recover from some inflammation in his left hip. Since his trip to the IL he hasn't been himself, allowing four runs against Miami on July 25 and five runs (including a home run to pitcher German Marquez) to Colorado on July 31.

Sunday, August 8 (1:10 pm PT): Madison Bumgarner (ARI) vs. Blake Snell (SD)

TV: Bally Sports San Diego, Radio: 97.3 The Fan

Let's be frank here: the Diamondbacks regret signing Madison Bumgarner to a $85 million contract. He enters Sunday with a 5.20 ERA in 25 starts in an Arizona uniform. However, he must've made some sort of an adjustment recently because he's been pitching like he's still in a Giants uniform the last few starts. The last time Bumgarner surrendered more than two earned runs in a start was all the way back on June 2.

The good news for the Padres is their players like hitting off of the left hander. Wil Myers and Manny Machado have combined to hit eight homers in their careers off Bumgarner. Victor Caratini is hitting .600 off of him with four RBI.

Blake Snell will look to build off of his solid start in Oakland this week where he allowed just one run in five innings of work. Snell looked mentally locked in and was able to get out of jams in his first four innings. Of course, he isn't going to get out of every jam so it'll be interesting to see if he can put together some cleaner innings this weekend.

This FanPost was written by a member of the Gaslamp Ball community and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Gaslamp Ball staff or SB Nation.

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