Diamondbacks-Padres Preview

The Associated Press

The San Diego Padres still own the majors' worst record, but at least their season-worst losing streak is over.

Padres right-hander Edinson Volquez would like to end his personal slide.

Volquez will try to avoid losing a career high-tying fourth consecutive start Saturday when San Diego and the Arizona Diamondbacks continue their series at Petco Park.

Back from a 1-9 trip, the Padres (18-35) snapped a six-game losing streak - the team's longest since a nine-game skid Aug. 24-Sept. 3 - with a 7-1 victory Friday.

Sparked by Jesus Guzman's pinch-hit two-run homer, San Diego scored six runs in the eighth inning en route to its season-best third straight victory at Petco.

"It's nice to see a lot of guys make contributions," manager Bud Black said. "I like the way we added on there in the eighth."

Volquez (2-5, 3.46 ERA) will try to lead the Padres to their first 4-0 stretch in San Diego since sweeping Florida from Aug. 18-21. He has a 5.40 ERA in his last three starts, though, with San Diego scoring one total run in those games.

Volquez has the majors' lowest run-support average at 1.66, so he can't afford to keep giving up free passes. He's walked 10 during his losing streak, including three - plus two wild pitches - in Sunday's 2-0 loss to the New York Mets.

He hasn't lost four consecutive starts since Aug. 17-Sept. 14, 2006, while with Texas.

Volquez is 0-1 with a 4.44 ERA in four starts against Arizona (23-29), striking out a season-high eight in seven innings of a 4-2, 11-inning home loss April 10.

He'll face a Diamondbacks team batting .226 with eight total runs during a 1-3 start to its six-game trip. The Diamondbacks went 1 for 8 with runners in scoring position Friday.

Arizona will try to get back on track with Daniel Hudson (1-1, 5.48) making his second start since coming off the disabled list. The right-hander did not earn a decision in Sunday's 4-3 home win over Milwaukee after allowing two runs in five innings.

"I don't know if I was on a pitch count or what," Hudson said after his 83-pitch performance. "I felt like I could go back out there for the sixth but there was no reason to push it my first start back."

Hudson is 4-1 with a 1.72 ERA in five starts against San Diego.

He should be careful pitching to former Chicago White Sox teammate Carlos Quentin, who is 8 for 16 with three homers, three doubles and seven RBIs in the last four games after missing the first 49 following offseason knee surgery.

The Diamondbacks' hottest hitter is first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, who is batting .429 (15 for 35) with two homers during a 10-game hitting streak.

Goldschmidt is 2 for 3 with a double against Volquez. Diamondbacks center fielder Chris Young is 1 for 11 with a homer in the matchup.

Padres catcher Yasmani Grandal could make his major league debut after being called up Friday from Triple-A Tucson. The 23-year-old switch-hitter was batting .317 with four homers and 23 RBIs.

"He gives us an extra bat until (Mark Kotsay) gets back (from the disabled list)," Black told the team's official website.