San Diego (65-62) at Colorado (59-68)

Partly Cloudy Currently: Denver, CO
Temp: 58° F
  • Game info: 9:05 pm EDT Fri Aug 25, 2006
  • TV: Ch4, FSRM
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Fresh off a sweep of the NL West leaders, the San Diego Padres will try to reclaim a share of first place on Friday when they begin a three-game set against the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field.

San Diego (65-62) is coming off a 5-5 homestand, but closed it with four straight wins and a three-game sweep of the division-leading Los Angeles Dodgers.

The defending NL West champion Padres moved within one game of first place on Wednesday with a 7-2 win over the Dodgers. Los Angeles, which plays at Arizona on Friday, has held sole possession of the division lead since Aug. 10.

“A week or 10 ays ago, I think we couldn’t have hit any lower in the bottom of the pit,” said pitcher Woody Williams, who has two of San Diego’s last five wins. “It’s just nice to see everyone rebound the way we have. We’ve gotten ourselves up off the floor, and now we’re playing with some confidence.”

San Diego is seeking its longest win streak since going into the All-Star break by winning five straight.

Padres pitchers have held the opposition to three runs or fewer in nine of the last 12 games. They’ve combined for a 0.73 ERA during the four-game winning streak, walking four and striking out 26 in 37 innings.

Manager Bruce Bochy has been impressed with how his team has bounced back after opening the homestand by being swept in a four-game set with the sub-.500 San Francisco Giants.

“We played with a lot of heart after that first series with the Giants,” Bochy said. “We went through a lot on this homestand.”

Mike Thompson (3-4, 4.40 ERA) has been recalled from Triple-A Portland for the fifth time this season to start for San Diego. This time, he’s filling the spot in the rotation vacated by Chan Ho Park, who went back on the disabled list Tuesday due to intestinal bleeding.

Thompson had been sent back to the minors Sunday, a day after starting for injured right-hander Clay Hensley. He allowed four runs and six hits with three walks in 5 2-3 innings in a 5-3 defeat to Arizona.

The rookie right-hander is 0-2 with a 4.30 ERA in six starts and one relief appearance in the majors since winning at Texas on June 20.

Thompson has started against Colorado twice this season and lost both times, allowing six runs and 12 hits in 12 innings.

The Rockies (59-68) are in last place in the NL West and coming off a winless six-game road trip, recording their fourth losing streak of six or more this season.

Colorado was swept in a three-game set against Milwaukee with a 12-6 loss on Thursday.

“We have to find a way to beat good teams,” Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said. “We have to find a way to win series. We have to find a way to score runners. We have to find a way to get things done on a major league level.”

The Rockies, however, have won eight of 13 against San Diego this season. The Padres lost three of four from July 27-30 the last time they visited Coors Field.

Left-hander Jeff Francis (9-10, 3.38) will try to help Colorado break its six-game skid when he opposes Thompson.

Francis has lost his last four starts versus the Padres, including three this season, and is 3-6 with a 4.83 career ERA against them.

He held the New York Mets hitless for 4 2-3 innings on Saturday, but could not escape the sixth as he ended up allowing six runs—two earned—with five hits and three walks in a 7-4 defeat. He was 1-0 with a 1.99 ERA in his previous three starts.

Related Articles

Starting Pitchers

M. Thompson Pit vs. J. Francis Tor
4-5 Record 13-11
4.99 ERA 4.16
35 K 117
30 BB 69
1.45 WHIP 1.29


Friday, Aug 25