San Diego Padres: Series preview: Padres vs. Brewers

Apr 25, 2017; Phoenix, AZ, USA; San Diego Padres pitcher Miguel Diaz against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 25, 2017; Phoenix, AZ, USA; San Diego Padres pitcher Miguel Diaz against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports /

A look at the pitching matchups for the San Diego Padres weekend series against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park in Wisconsin.

The San Diego Padres are on a roll coming off of a three game sweep over the Cincinnati Reds at Petco Park. This hot stretch has allowed them to surpass the San Francisco Giants in the National League West division standings and elude the cellar for the first time in months.

Now, the task San Diego is faced with is continuing to play solid baseball away from the friendly confines of their home ballpark. This weekend, the opponent is the Milwaukee Brewers, a difficult road series.

The Padres enter 27-40, while the Brewers come in on top of the NL Central with a 36-32 record.

As has been proven the last three days, pitching matchups mean everything. San Diego pitched poorly during their struggles against the Diamondbacks and Royals, but really turned it around in the series against the Reds, allowing a total of seven runs in the three games.

Friday: Miguel Diaz vs. Junior Guerra

The series opens Friday night at 5:10 PM PT. Miguel Diaz will take the mound for the Friars against his former team, opposing hard throwing right-hander Junior Guerra. This matchup favors the 32-year-old Guerra on the surface, as he has impressed this season over his five starts with a 2.45 ERA.

But the Padres have finally started to hit thanks to the emergence of Franchy Cordero in the outfield and the continued offensive production of Hunter Renfroe. If these two can lead San Diego’s lineup to yet another productive evening offensively, they will give their pitching a chance to shine once again.

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Saturday: Dinelson Lamet vs. Chase Anderson

Dinelson Lamet has been forced into playing a greater role than anticipated in San Diego’s rotation thus far thanks to injuries to starters Jered Weaver and Trevor Cahill. While this isn’t the ideal situation, Lamet has given fans reason to be confident in another decent start. His 8.50 ERA is poor, but his 2-2 record reveals his ability to battle through struggles and pitch well when it matters most.

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What Lamet has been unable to accomplish is getting deep into a game. This underscores the need for the bullpen to be ready on Saturday, as there’s a chance they will need to cover the majority of the game’s innings.

Chase Anderson is a 29-year-old right-hander who has quietly pitched very efficiently in 2017. His 5-2 record and 2.83 ERA are both impressive, and the Padres will need to work very hard to push a couple of runs across and do everything they can to get into Milwaukee’s bullpen.

Sunday’s pitching matchup has yet to be determined.

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With the way the Brewers have been playing, a San Diego series victory on the road would be monumental for the club’s confidence. Friday and Saturday at least will both be difficult due to the effectiveness of Milwaukee’s starting pitching, so the Padres will need to be on top of their game offensively. This series will serve as a true test for San Diego to see if this mini roll they are currently on is for real.

Following an off day, Friars fans couldn’t be more excited to get it underway. Go Padres!