Fri, 17 Sep 2021

With season seemingly on the brink, Padres host Rockies

Field Level Media
01 Aug 2021, 22:40 GMT+10

It's a fair question considering the events of the past 48 hours.

Are the San Diego Padres collapsing?

Forget for the moment any talk of them overtaking the Los Angeles Dodgers or San Francisco Giants in the National League West. Can they hold on to the second wildcard berth?

That's what the past 48 hours have wrought.

First, the Padres failed to acquire the starting pitcher they needed at the trading deadline. Then they lost one of the healthy starters they have when right-hander Chris Paddack sustained a left oblique strain in a Friday bullpen session.

Paddack has gone on the 10-day injured list with no set return date. Ditto for All-Star shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr., who again suffered a partial dislocation of his left shoulder in an awkward slide into third base Friday night.

Then to add insult to injury, the Padres lost a second straight home game to the Colorado Rockies Saturday night. In fact, they have lost four of their past five games to the Rockies in San Diego -- yes, the same Rockies who have a 13-39 road record, which, thanks to the Padres, is no longer the worst road record in the major leagues.

On Sunday, the Padres hope to avoid losing the third game of a four-game series to the Rockies, who hold an overall 8-7 edge on San Diego this season. Paddack had been scheduled to start Sunday. Tatis was supposed to be at shortstop.

And to make the immediate matters even worse, Sunday afternoon's pitching pairing of Colorado left-hander Austin Gomber (8-5, 3.69 ERA) against Padres' rookie spot starter Reiss Knehr (0-0, 4.91 ERA) clearly favors the visitors.

Here is the line to contemplate -- Gomber already has faced the Padres three times this season. In those games, he is 1-0 with a 0.47 ERA, having pitched 19 1/3 innings and giving up two runs (one earned) on 12 hits and two walks with 17 strikeouts.

Overall, the 27-year-old Gomber, who was the Rockies main return from the Cardinals in the Feb. 1 Nolan Arenado trade, has made 17 starts, giving up 43 runs (37 earned) on 69 hits and 26 walks with 86 strikeouts in 90 1/3 innings. Two of those starts have come since Gomber returned after missing a month with forearm tightness.

"I like the way Gomber has pitched, how he's progressed and how he approaches the game," Rockies manager Bud Black said recently. "We've seen Austin take huge steps forward."

Meanwhile, Knehr has made only one previous major league appearance - against the Rockies on July 9 in San Diego. The right-hander gave up two runs on three hits and four walks in 3 2/3 innings in the 4-2 San Diego win.

Padres manager Jayce Tingler didn't have much to say about Knehr Saturday night. He spent the time discussing Tatis and Paddack and how the return of either is yet to be determined.

Tatis has partially dislocated his left shoulder at least twice previously this season. The first time also landed him on the injured list for exactly 10 days.

"It came out for a longer period of time before it slid back in this time," Tingler said. "It's definitely more tender and sore than the couple times it happened earlier in the season."

As for Paddack: "Obliques are extremely tricky," Tingler said. "You just don't know."

--Field Level Media

More Los Angeles News

Access More

Sign up for Los Angeles News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!