Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports
Ian Kennedy (10-11, 3.65 ERA) and Vidal Nuno (0-4, 3.23) start the finale of the series on Thursday. Historically, Kennedy has struggled against his former team but two weeks ago he got the win, pitching 5.2 innings and striking out 6. In 2011, he earned a National League leading 21 wins with the Diamondbacks.
Nuno pitched against the Padres two weeks ago as well, pitching into the 8th inning and only allowing 2 runs on 2 hits. The Padres have another chance to put away a team inferior to them. They are coming off of a successful week against two likely playoff teams. What the Padres have struggled to do is win games that they should. This is a prime example. Arizona is 7.5 games behind San Diego in the standings. The Padres should put them away easily, but it just has not happened this year.
My prediction is that they finally get over the hump. They win the series with the D-backs three games to one. Ross, Kennedy and Cashner all pitch well enough to keep the Padres in the game and eventually the win. Despaigne may struggle again which could possibly be the one loss the Padres get in this series. The Padres need to win this series to start off the last month of the season right.