|5:40 PM PT6:40 PM MT7:40 PM CT8:40 PM ET20:40 ET0:40 GMT8:40 5:40 PM MST7:40 PM EST8:10 PM VEN4:40 UAE (+1)7:40 PM CT, September 7, 2019
PETCO Park, San Diego, California Attendance: 29,709
Padres still ahead of Rockies in race for last place
The San Diego Padres are safe ... for the time being.
Even if the Colorado Rockies sweep their three-game series from the Padres in San Diego this weekend, they will still trail the Padres by three games in what has become a disheartening race for last place in the National League West.
Both teams have shown the ability to discover how low they can go.
Colorado used two unearned runs to defeat the Padres 3-2 Friday night in the series opener. The win snapped a nine-game Colorado losing streak and was only the Rockies' second win in the last 15 games. They are 16-37 since the All-Star break.
"There is a sense of relief when something like that ends," Rockies manager Bud Black said after Friday night's win.
The Padres, meanwhile, suffered a fourth straight loss Friday night to slip 12 games below .500 for the first time this season. They are 19-31 since the All-Star break.
The Rockies also hold an 8-6 edge on the Padres (and 4-3 at Petco Park) going into Saturday night's game, with right-hander Jeff Hoffman (1-5, 7.35 ERA) starting for Colorado against Padres left-hander Joey Lucchesi (9-7, 4.00 ERA).
While this is not exactly a classic pitching matchup, there are some interesting side notes.
In 47 career major league appearances (33 starts), the 6-foot-5, 227-pound Hoffman -- who was the ninth overall pick in the 2014 draft -- has a 7-14 record with a 6.24 ERA and a 1.62 WHIP.
But against the Padres, Hoffman has a 1-1 career record with a 1.08 ERA, a 1.020 WHIP and a .197 opponents' batting average - having given up nine runs (but only two earned) on 12 hits and five walks with 18 strikeouts in 16 2/3 innings.
This will be his second start against the Padres this season. In the first, on June 14 at Coors Field in Denver, Hoffman allowed one run on three hits and two walks with two strikeouts in five innings. He received a no-decision because the Padres rallied to win that game 16-12.
Saturday will be Hoffman's fourth career appearance at Petco Park, where he has a 1-1 record and a 0.84 ERA -- giving up eight runs (one earned) on nine hits and three walks against 14 strikeouts in 10 2/3 innings. On Sept. 18, 2016, Hoffman gave up seven unearned runs over 2 2/3 innings.
Hoffman, who was a Sept. 1 recall from the minor leagues, is 0-2 on the road this season with a 7.36 ERA in 18 1/3 innings.
Lucchesi, meanwhile, will be seeking his 10th win of the season Saturday night in his club-leading 27th start of the season. He is attempting to become the Padres' first 10-game winner since Jhoulys Chacin won 13 games in 2017.
Lucchesi is 2-0 over his last three starts, during which he has allowed four runs on 14 hits and five walks with 10 strikeouts in 17 innings -- a 2.12 ERA and 1.12 WHIP.
"We just want Joey to keep pitching like he has been recently," Padres manager Andy Green said. "His 'churve' is working and he's using the deception in his delivery to his advantage while hitting different spots with his fastball."
Lucchesi will be making his third start against the Rockies this season and the seventh of his career. He is 1-1 against the Rockies in six starts covering 34 1/3 innings -- giving up 13 runs (11 earned) on 26 hits and nine walks with 31 strikeouts.
--Field Level Media
Updated September 7, 2019