Diamondbacks-Padres Preview


The Arizona Diamondbacks are back in the win column.

The major league-worst San Diego Padres haven't been there in more than a week.

Diamondbacks rookie Wade Miley will try to win a career-best fourth consecutive start Friday night when these NL West rivals open a three-game series at Petco Park.

Arizona (23-28) avoided a three-game sweep Wednesday with a 4-1 victory in San Francisco, and now heads to San Diego for the second time after taking two of three there April 10-12.

The Diamondbacks open this series with Miley (6-1, 2.41 ERA) making his first start against the Padres (17-35) this season. The left-hander won three consecutive starts in 2011 before walking seven and allowing seven runs over 11 innings in back-to-back appearances versus San Diego in September.

Miley, though, has a 1.83 ERA during his current three-start win streak.

"It's all about a team win," he said Saturday after giving up three earned runs in an 8-5 win over Milwaukee.

Miley, a converted reliever, has also been helping the Diamondbacks at the plate, batting .444 (8 for 18). He is trying to become the first Arizona pitcher to record an eight-game hitting streak.

Miley will be facing a Padres team that batted .211 and recorded a 7.58 ERA while losing the last six games on its 1-9 trip. It's the club's longest skid since dropping nine in a row Aug. 24-Sept. 3.

San Diego was swept in Chicago this week by a Cubs team that entered the three-game set on a 12-game skid.

"It's not a lack of effort thing," third baseman Chase Headley told the Padres' official website after Wednesday's 8-6 defeat. "But it's the little things that when you're not doing them consistently, you lose games."

One bright spot for the Padres in that series was the play of outfielder Carlos Quentin, who made his team debut following offseason knee surgery. Acquired from the Chicago White Sox over the winter, Quentin went 7 for 12 with three homers, three doubles and six RBIs.

"Right now I'm seeing the ball well and hopefully I continue to," said Quentin, a San Diego native.

Friday's scheduled starter Clayton Richard (2-6, 4.76) could use all the help he can get as the Padres have totaled 13 runs in his last seven starts.

With such little room for error, the left-hander will likely need better stuff in the opener than in a 9-0 loss to the New York Mets on Saturday when he gave up four runs and two homers - all in the first inning.

"It's tough when you put your team in a hole from the get-go," Richard said.

He is 3-0 in four starts against Arizona despite posting a 5.40 ERA.

Diamondbacks center fielder Chris Young is 4 for 9 with two homers off Richard, while right fielder Justin Upton is 4 for 8.

Padres center fielder Cameron Maybin, 1 for 11 against Arizona in April's series, is expected to return to the starting lineup for the first time since Saturday due to a sprained right wrist.

Arizona left fielder Jason Kubel could return Friday after being placed on the paternity leave list Wednesday.

Diamondbacks first baseman Paul Goldschmidt is batting .419 (13 for 31) with two homers and five doubles during a nine-game hitting streak.