The San Diego Padres have had to deal with some of the best pitchers in the NL lately, though they don’t appear to be facing as tough of a challenge in their series finale against the St. Louis Cardinals.
The Padres will try for their fourth win in five games when Tyler Lyons makes his major league debut for the visiting Cardinals on Wednesday night.
After beating Washington’s Jordan Zimmermann on Saturday and St. Louis’ Shelby Miller in the series opener Monday, San Diego (21-24) finally met its match in a 10-2 loss against Adam Wainwright on Tuesday.
“They’ve still got some big hitters over there, though, so you never can get too comfortable if they’ve got a lineup with some guys who can do some damage,” Wainwright said.
The Cardinals (29-16) snapped a four-game losing streak to the Padres, limiting them to one extra-base hit after San Diego had 10 during its three-game winning streak.
It’s uncertain if teammate Carlos Quentin will play Wednesday after sitting out the last game with a balky right knee.
Although St. Louis’ starters have a major league-best 2.64 ERA, they had posted a 5.08 ERA in the previous seven games before Wainwright’s gem Tuesday.
“We talked about everything,” St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. “Lyons is the right guy right now.”
Making his second career start, the right-hander gave up five runs and six hits - three home runs - over 5 1-3 innings of a 6-5 loss to Washington on Friday.
It was an improvement over his debut, in which Smith allowed six runs in one-plus innings of an 8-7 road loss to Tampa Bay on May 11.
Smith will face a St. Louis team that may be without third baseman David Freese for a third straight game after he was spiked in the thumb Sunday.
Daniel Descalso filled in nicely Tuesday, delivering his first grand slam and recording three hits and a career-high five RBIs. He had batted .161 over his previous 26 games.
The Padres will be trying to wrap up their seven-game homestand with a winning record.