Diamondbacks-Padres Preview

The Associated Press

The Arizona Diamondbacks just won an emotional series against an NL West rival.

The division leaders can't let up with the surging San Diego Padres up next.

Trevor Cahill will try to rebound from his shortest outing of 2013 on Friday night and prevent the host Padres from matching their longest winning streak of the season.

After a 5-3 loss on Tuesday when pitcher Ian Kennedy and manager Kirk Gibson were ejected in a benches-clearing incident with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Arizona (37-29) took the decisive finale Wednesday, 8-6 in 12 innings.

The Diamondbacks had a season-high 20 hits - four apiece by Cody Ross and Miguel Montero.

"The guys weren't satisfied with one run, they went out and got a bunch of runs (four in the 12th)," closer Heath Bell told the Diamondbacks' official website.

Another good night at the plate could help Cahill (3-7, 4.02 ERA), who has a 13.50 ERA while losing his two June outings after being charged with eight runs in 3 2-3 innings in Saturday's 10-5 loss to San Francisco.

"I left a lot of balls up and when I got ahead and tried to put them away, I get it belt high and down the middle," Cahill said.

The right-hander lasted only 3 2-3 in one of his five outings against the Padres last season, but went 1-0 with a 0.60 ERA in two starts at Petco Park, including a six-hitter in a 6-0 victory June 3.

He'll face a Padres team going for a seventh win in nine games after a three-game sweep of NL East-leading Atlanta. San Diego (32-34) is 27-19 since its 5-15 start.

"We've been playing very good baseball," Jesus Guzman told the Padres' official website after Wednesday's 5-3 victory. "When you play like that, you're going to get the results you want. The first step is to get to .500."

The Padres scored 15 runs against the Braves despite hitting .227, but manager Bud Black had to be especially pleased with his rotation's 1.99 ERA in that series.

Eric Stults (5-5, 3.53) will try to keep that going as he makes his second start against the Diamondbacks in three weeks. The left-hander is 1-1 with a 1.64 ERA in three starts since a 5-2 loss at Arizona on May 24, when he surrendered four runs in 6 1-3 innings.

"The last few starts, I feel like I have a good tempo," said Stults, who went seven innings in Saturday's 4-2 win at Colorado, giving up two runs - one earned. "I've felt good about the way I've been throwing the ball."

He can't feel good about how he's fared against Martin Prado, who is 6 for 14 in that matchup.

Prado is 11 for 25 against Padres pitching this season as these West foes have split six games. Paul Goldschmidt went 6 for 16 with five RBIs in those contests, but he's batting .138 in Arizona's last seven games.

Padres shortstop Everth Cabrera is 8 for 24 with five extra-base hits - two homers - in the season series, but is 1 for 10 lifetime off Cahill.

San Diego, winner of 18 of 25 at Petco Park, have taken two of three in each of Arizona's last two visits.

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