Zach Davies (5-2, 2.61 ERA) vs. Jesus Luzardo (2-1, 3.74 ERA)
The San Diego Padres are in Oakland for three days to face the Athletics in a three-game interleague series. If you like interleague baseball, you must be liking this 60-game season. There has been a lot of American and National League crossover.
The DH is of course being used across the board, with the National League ditching pitchers hitting in the lineup. I kind of miss watching the pitchers square up at the plate, but can make an argument for the other side as well. The Padres are coming off a lifeless performance on Thursday night in Anaheim. Well, credit the pitching staff that came to play, though.
The Padres held the Angels to no runs, but they didn’t score a run of their own. They managed just 3 hits and the Angels spoiled the debut of Mike Clevinger. Clevinger was responsible for both runs, as he left the contest after pitching 7 innings with 2 earned runs conceded.
Andrew Heaney was just untouchable for the Angels. That was the difference in the ballgame. It’s not easy to stop the Padres’ offense, but Heaney managed to do it without any issues. On a usual night, that’s not going to be the norm for pitchers against the Padres, though. The Padres might be a year or two off from being a really serious World Series contender, though their offense can really kill the ball.
Fernando Tatis Jr. and Manny Machado together are a dangerous duo that pitchers have to be aware of. If there are runners on with Tatis Jr. and Machado coming up, that might spell some danger. In any case, Heaney did a good job handling them on Thursday night.
It will be rookie Jesus Luzardo’s turn to try to tame the Padres. Zach Davies, who has been quietly going about his business, will counter for the Padres. Get our free San Diego Padres vs. Oakland Athletics pick for September for 4, 2020.
San Diego Padres vs. Oakland Athletics MLB Betting Odds:
San Diego Padres vs. Oakland Athletics Prediction:
Jesus Luzardo is likely going to turn into something special for the Athletics, or for another team. By the time Luzardo really develops, it might be time for a trade to get something in return. It feels like that’s the MO of the A’s. They’ve done it before and will do it again. As you might know by now, they do not like opening up the wallet for a player that teams are willing to trade for.
In any event, expect Luzardo to be a quality hurler in the future. He made six appearances out of the bullpen last season and performed well. Luzardo concluded the season with an ERA of 1.50 and 0.67 WHIP. In seven appearances in 2020, five starts and two as a reliever, Luzardo has watched his numbers regress to a 3.74 ERA and 1.37 WHIP.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with that, and for a 22-year-old that is getting experience as a starting pitcher for the first time in the major leagues, it’s something that the Athletics can work with. Luzardo is coming off a so-so performance versus the Texas Rangers last week. He gave up 7 hits and 3 earned runs in 6.2 innings of work.
After the Padres did nothing last night, expect them to put forth a better effort on Friday. Luzardo likely won’t get blown up in this one, but the Padres are going to make him work hard. Zach Davies has proven to be a terrific signing for the Padres. They didn’t have to pay an arm and a leg for him, but he’s been giving the same production as some other more expensive pitchers.
Davies goes into Oakland with a 2.61 ERA and 0.90 WHIP through 41.1 innings. He hasn’t allowed more than 3 earned runs in any of his seven starts. Davies did a terrific job at Coors Field in his most recent outing to hold the Rockies scoreless through 5.2 innings. That’s not easys to do in Denver. He has a really good history against the Athletics, with his opponents hitting just .148 with no home runs and 1 run scored in 34 at-bats. I think there is enough value on the Padres to warrant a play.