The Padres are three games behind Houston and San Francisco for the wild-card lead. They also trail the Cubs by two games. San Diego would need to sweep Arizona this weekend and get a lot of help from the Dodgers, Braves and Rockies.
Peavy has done all he could to help the Padres stay in contention. Named NL Player of the Week on Monday after earning pitcher of the month honors for August, Peavy needs to pitch just 1 2-3 innings to be qualified for the ERA crown.
Peavy has a NL-leading 2.25 ERA, but hasn’t pitched enough innings after missing the first two months of the season because of an injury. The Chicago Cubs’ Carlos Zambrano (2.60) and Arizona’s Randy Johnson (2.65) officially own the top ERAs in the NL.
The only Padres pitcher to win an ERA title was Randy Jones, who posted a 2.24 ERA in 1975 before winning the Cy Young award the following year.
Pitching on three days’ rest for the first time in his career on Sunday, the 23-year-old right-hander allowed one run in six innings with seven strikeouts in a 7-1 home win over Arizona.
“It would be nice to win the ERA title,” said Peavy, who posted an 0.64 ERA in winning two straight starts. “I have one more start and we’ll see what happens. I really am not sure what has happened with the qualifying, but I knew I was leading coming in.
“I think just to have a San Diego Padre in there to represent this ball club and represent the kind of year we’ve had, means a lot.”
The Diamondbacks failed to complete their first sweep of the season, losing 4-1 to visiting Milwaukee on Wednesday.
The Diamondbacks fell to 49-110 on the year, becoming the first NL team since 1969 to lose that many games. The Expos and Padres both lost 110 games in 1969, their first year of existence. Arizona was 65-97 in its expansion year of 1998.