The Padres came out of the All-Star Break on fire. They took series from the Mets and Cubs and then rolled into Atlanta on top of the world. Now they head back home on a 3-game losing streak, and the offense looking as dead as ever even with Jedd Gyorko and Yonder Alonso back in the fold. Now they hope some home cooking will rejuvenate them so they can get back into form.
On the mound tonight is the perfect streak buster, Tyson Ross (9-10, 2.65 ERA). Ross is coming off his first double-digit strikeout performance in 2014, where he punched out 11 Cubs, in just 6 innings en route to a victory. It was just more of the same for Ross, who has emerged as one of baseball’s best pitchers in the month of July. In his starts this month, he’s allowed only 4 runs in 35 innings off 24 hits and 5 walks. His 1.03 ERA is the lowest of any qualified National League pitcher in the month of July. It’s safe to say he’s been dominant this month. Now he’ll be faced with the tough task of working his way through the Cardinals lineup, but based on his prior success he should be just fine.
Facing off against Ross will be Lance Lynn (11-7, 3.05 ERA). Lynn has bounced between starting and relieving throughout his career, but he seems to have settled into the rotation this year and may have found his home. In his last start, Lynn tossed 6 1/3 innings allowing 2 runs (1 earned) on 6 hits. It was his 4th consecutive start and 8th out of his last 9 starts in which he’s allowed 2 or fewer runs. He may not be on a Tyson Ross-esque run, but he’s been pretty great, and the Padres will get a first hand look at him tonight.
Leading off for the Padres tonight will be Everth Cabrera.The Padres shortstop who has been sidelined since July 2nd with a hamstring injury. Bud Black‘s infield combination tonight will be Yonder Alonso, Jedd Gyorko, Yangervis Solarte and Cabrera, the first time this grouping has worked together and looking towards the rest of the season, this may be the combination we see on a near every day basis. It’s good to see the complete lineup getting healthy, so we, and the future front office, can assess where every player is and how they fit in teams future.
Hopefully, with everyone healthy, today will be the day the offense finally starts producing consistently. It’s a tall order to ask of these guys, but a fan can dream, can’t he? First pitch is at 7:10 PDT.