Pittsburgh (66-85) at San Diego (83-67)

Cloudy Currently: San Diego, CA
Temp: 70° F
  • Game info: 10:05 pm EDT Wed Sep 19, 2007
  • TV: FSPI, Ch4
Preview | Box Score | Recap

Although Chris Young has been among baseball’s ERA leaders for nearly the whole season, he hasn’t won in close to two months for the San Diego Padres.

Young will try to end his winless drought and help the wild card-leading Padres win a sixth straight game Wednesday night when they continue a four-game series against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

San Diego (83-67) owns the lowest ERA in baseball at 3.62, and Young (9-7, 2.77 ERA) has been a big part of it. He’s second in the majors in ERA behind teammate Jake Peavy (2.39).

Young, however is 0-4 with a 5.79 ERA in seven outings since his last victory on July 24. The Padres had lost six of his starts in a row until a 5-4, 10-inning win over San Francisco on Friday in which Young gave up three runs over seven innings.

“I just had a feeling about Chris’ performance tonight,” manager Bud Black told the Padres’ official Web site. “I think he is going to rise to the occasion here in the next couple of weeks. I thought he got stronger as the game went on.”

The right-hander continues to dominate at home, where he is 4-2 in 12 starts with a major league-low 1.47 ERA. He’s given up just 13 earned runs at Petco Park, but eight of those have been over his last two starts.

Young is 3-0 with a 0.76 ERA in three career starts against Pittsburgh, including a 9-0 win on May 30 in which he scattered four hits through seven innings.

The Padres have received outstanding pitching during their winning streak with a 1.57 team ERA, and every starter in the rotation has notched a victory except Young. The latest was future Hall of Famer Greg Maddux, who gave up three runs over five innings in a 5-3 win on Tuesday.

Maddux, however, had his streak without allowing a walk end at 59 2-3 innings when he issued a free pass to Jason Bay on a full-count pitch in the third.

“It was a good team win,” Maddux said.

San Diego remained one game behind Arizona in the NL West, and also maintained its lead of 1 1/2 games over Philadelphia for the wild card.

Kevin Kouzmanoff had two more hits for the Padres, and the third baseman is 17-for-33 (.515) with seven RBIs in his last 10 games.

Pittsburgh (66-85) has lost four straight overall, and four in a row against San Diego since beating the Padres 4-1 on May 29. The Pirates are 4-for-30 (.133) with runners in scoring position and have stranded 33 men on base in the last four losses to San Diego.

Ian Snell (9-12, 3.92) needs to last at least five innings to reach 200 in a season for the first time. Snell pitched well on Friday, yielding one run over six innings but failing to receive a decision in a 4-3 victory at Houston.

The right-hander has been victimized by poor run support in his 15 road starts, going 2-6 despite a solid 3.83 ERA.

Snell is making his first career start against the Padres. He made two relief appearances against them two years ago, allowing one run over four innings.

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Starting Pitchers

I. Snell LAD vs. C. Young KC
9-12 Record 9-8
3.76 ERA 3.12
177 K 167
68 BB 72
1.33 WHIP 1.10


Wednesday, Sep 19