The return of five-time Cy Young Award winner Randy Johnson to the desert wasn’t enough to stop the Arizona Diamondbacks’ losing streak from reaching a season-high five games. They’ll look to the reigning NL Cy Young award winner to prevent the skid from growing even longer.
Facing San Diego for the second time in a week, Brandon Webb looks to end the Diamondbacks’ struggles when they continue a three-game series with the Padres on Wednesday night.
Webb (1-1, 4.00 ERA) struck out a career-high 13 over eight innings against the Padres last Wednesday at San Diego, but didn’t get a decision in Arizona’s 5-2 win in 12 innings - the last victory before the losing streak started.
“Webby threw such a great game that we wanted to at least come away with a win for the team, because an effort like that, you don’t want it to go to waste,” said the Diamondbacks’ Eric Byrnes, who singled home the go-ahead run in the 12th.
Webb is 2-2 with a 4.18 ERA in eight starts at Chase Field versus San Diego (12-7), which sends Jake Peavy to the mound.
Peavy (3-0, 2.13) had his worst outing of 2007 on Thursday against the Diamondbacks. Despite hitting a two-run triple to spark a five-run third inning and recording a season-high eight strikeouts, Peavy gave up five runs and 10 hits over 5 1/3 innings in San Diego’s 11-6 win.
“A win is a win, and I’ll take a win any day of the week,” Peavy told the Padres’ official Web site. “I was upset that you give up runs and pitch just 5 1/3 innings. That is not what I aim to do. But I want to win.
“I’ve passed the point of personal achievement. Obviously, you want to do well, you want to win ballgames and I want the team to win a World Series.”
Peavy, who’s trying to become the first San Diego starting pitcher to win his first four decisions to start a season since Matt Clement in 2000, has alternated wins and losses in his last three games at Arizona, and is 3-5 with a 6.10 ERA in nine starts there.
Making his first start with Arizona (10-11) six months after back surgery, Johnson lasted five innings and allowed six runs and six hits with four walks and seven strikeouts. He threw 53 of his 97 pitches for strikes and hit two batters as the Diamondbacks lost 10-5.
Johnson, who needs 20 wins for 300 in his career, pitched in Phoenix for the first time since Oct. 2, 2004. He spent the last two seasons in the AL with the New York Yankees.
“I thought everything went pretty well,” he said. “It’s not the way I would have written things up.”
The Padres’ Marcus Giles extended his hitting streak to 11 games with a sixth-inning double, and scored on a single by his brother Brian to begin a four-run inning. Marcus Giles is hitting .352 (19-for-54) with 11 RBIs during his hitting streak, but he’s struggled against Webb, batting only .182 (2-for-11).
Khalil Greene capped the sixth with an RBI double and scored on pitcher Brandon Medders’ throwing error. The shortstop tied a career high with four hits and drove in a season-high four runs. He’s also driven in a run in six straight games, plating nine over that span.