Garrett Richards (1-1, 3.24 ERA) vs. Robbie Ray (1-2, 10.59 ERA)
The San Diego Padres will look to avoid a sweep on Sunday afternoon in the desert. The Padres and Arizona Diamondbacks will meet for the third consecutive day at Chase Field for the series finale of a three-game series. The Diamondbacks emerged with 5-1 and 7-6 wins the last two days over the Padres.
They had a 7-1 lead on the Padres before San Diego made things interesting late. D-backs’ fans had to be feeling pretty tense in the 9th frame, as they nearly blew a 7-1 lead. Ultimately, though, Arizona was able to hold on for a 7-6 victory.
The Padres need to break out of this funk fast or the Los Angeles Dodgers are going to be uncatchable soon. The Dodgers won again last night to advance to 15-7 on the season. With the Rockies losing last night at home, the Dodgers are quickly up two games in the NL West.
Prior to this weekend, the Rockies had a slim lead on the Dodgers, but how quickly things can change in baseball. The Padres and Rockies are in a critical juncture of the season right now. They can’t go cold or the hot Dodgers are going to pull away.
A five-game lead is big in a shortened season. The Padres are down four games in the NL West. They’ve already played 22 games, only eight games away from the halfway mark. It obviously doesn’t feel like we’re almost at the ½ pole of the season. In any event, even though it’s a 60-game season, the elite teams that deserve to go to the playoffs will be there anyway no matter how long the season is. The expanded playoffs will help some fringe teams out, though.
The Padres are scheduled to send out Garrett Richards to the hill today. The former Angel is good, only if he can stay healthy for a full season. His tenure with the Angels was bumpy because of injuries. When he could stay on the bump, Richards was an effective pitcher. Head below for our free San Diego Padres vs. Arizona Diamondbacks pick for August 16, 2020.
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San Diego Padres vs. Arizona Diamondbacks Prediction:
Garrett Richards has been holding up well for the Padres so far. Knock on wood — there hasn’t been any talk of Richards being injured, which has been the status quo of his career. Richards has posted an ERA of 3.74 and 1.25 WHIP in 21.2 innings. That’s what you come to expect from a healthy Richards.
He’s appeared in 177 games in his career and has recorded an ERA of 3.60 and 1.26 WHIP. So while this is a small sample size for Richards in 2020, his production pretty well lines up with the output in his career, which began in 2011 with the Angels. He’s coming off a tremendous performance against the dangerous Dodgers.
Richards was able to hold the Dodgers to 1 earned run through 6 innings. He has pitched well against the D-backs in his career. Arizona is hitting .206 with just 1 home run against Richards in 63 at-bats. If Richards can pitch in the same form as he did against the Dodgers, then he’ll be in good shape at Chase Field. The offense will have to get started earlier than they did yesterday, though.
Robbie Ray has been off the mark this season, and the power numbers have been good for the Padres against him. Ray has gotten rocked for a 10.59 ERA and 2.12 WHIP through four games. He is coming off a brutal showing against the Rockies, as they torched Ray for 7 hits and 6 earned runs in 3.2 innings.
Ray also got tagged for 4 hits and 3 earned runs in 3.2 innings against the Padres to open the season. They’ve hit 7 home runs and notched 15 runs against Ray in 105 at-bats. Look for the Padres to salvage this series with a win to prevent a sweep on Sunday.