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Another crucial series begins tonight for the Padres

The Baltimore Orioles might be coming to town at the wrong time for San Diego

San Diego Padres v Arizona Diamondbacks Photo by Norm Hall/Getty Images

For weeks we’ve been saying ‘this is a crucial series for the Padres’. Well here’s another one, as the 73-win Baltimore Orioles (who just got Cedric Mullins back) come to town to face a San Diego club that is 1-6 in their last seven and haven’t won consecutive games since the first couple days of August.

The Padres latest loss on Sunday—a game where they led 4-2 with eight outs to go—was “probably as tough a loss we’ve had”, according to manager Bob Melvin, which is an accomplishment considering how many bad losses they’ve had this season.

The Friars sit 5.5 games back of the final NL Wild Card spot and this home stand could determine if the Padres will be fighting for a postseason berth in the final days of the season. Two or three losses to the Orioles could make San Diego fall to more than six games back before the Arizona Diamondbacks come to town. Losing a combined five out of seven to them and the Miami Marlins could be the last blow.

Here are the expected pitching matchups for the Orioles series that starts tonight at 6:40 pm:

Tonight: Grayson Rodriguez (BAL) vs. Yu Darvish (SD)

First Pitch: 6:40 pm PT, MLB-San Diego Padres, 97.3 The Fan

Rodriguez’s last outing (August 8): 6 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

Darvish’s last outing (August 9): 6 IP, 6 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

Tuesday: Jack Flaherty (BAL) vs. Michael Wacha (SD)

First Pitch: 6:40 pm PT, MLB-San Diego Padres, 97.3 The Fan

Flaherty’s last outing (August 9): 5 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 8 K

Wacha’s last outing (July 1, last start before IL stint): 5 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

Wednesday: Dean Kremer (BAL) vs. Blake Snell (SD)

First Pitch: 5:40 pm PT, MLB-San Diego Padres, 97.3 The Fan

Kremer’s last outing (August 10): 7 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 5 K

Snell’s last outing (August 11): 6 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 7 K