Behind Joe Musgrove, hot Padres look to sweep Dodgers


A week ago, the San Diego Padres limped back to San Diego from a 1-5 trip that extended their plunge to 4-13 over 17 games.

Now, the Padres have won six straight games at Petco Park and will go for a three-game sweep of the Los Angeles Dodgers on Wednesday night.

“You guys are bringing it, and we are bringing it,” Padres pitcher Blake Snell told the sellout crowd Tuesday night as the Padres held on for a 3-2 win. “I promise you, we feel it.”

With California having eased its pandemic restrictions, the Padres have drawn more than 235,000 spectators over the past six games. And the team is feeling the vibe of packed houses.

“All the games with the Dodgers so far have been very intense,” Padres manager Jayce Tingler said. “Right now, we feel like we’re in a good spot and we’re feeding off some of the energy in the ballpark for sure. It certainly helps playing the Dodgers that that intensity is there.”

The Padres expect another packed house Wednesday as they send right-hander Joe Musgrove (4-6, 2.28 ERA) to the mound to face Dodgers right-hander Trevor Bauer (7-5, 2.45).

In the first six games of the homestand, the Padres have 16 doubles, a triple and 11 home runs.

“We are driving the fastball and not fouling it off,” Tingler said.

And over the past two nights, they have outscored the Dodgers 9-4 to move into a 6-3 lead in the season series thus far.

Now. It’s up to 2020 National League Cy Young Award winner Bauer to reverse the Padres’ momentum.

Bauer is 1-0 in two starts against the Padres this season, giving up four runs (three earned) on eight hits and a walk with 16 strikeouts in 12 innings for a 2.25 ERA and a .186 opponents’ batting average. But it hasn’t always been smooth sailing for Bauer against lesser Padres’ editions.

In six career starts against the Padres, Bauer has a 1-4 record with a 4.05 ERA and a .237 OBA. Bauer entered this season with a 0-4 record against the Padres with a 5.06 ERA.

Plus, before shutting out the Arizona Diamondbacks on three hits and three walks in his most recent start, Bauer was 1-2 in his three previous starts, allowing 13 runs (10 earned) on 20 hits and seven walks in 19 innings for a 4.74 ERA.

“He was back on his game against the Diamondbacks,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said of Bauer. “He was sharp. He was being himself.”

In the meantime, Musgrove, who threw the first no-hitter in Padres’ history on April 9, has a 1.58 ERA in his past seven appearances (six starts). He has given up seven runs on 24 hits and 10 walks and 44 strikeouts in his past 40 innings. For the season, Musgrove has a .176 OBA with 98 strikeouts in 79 innings.

But like Bauer, he’s had spotty success during his career against Wednesday night’s opponent. Musgrove is 0-3 in four career starts against the Dodgers with a 5.03 ERA and a .305 OBA.

In his only start against the Dodgers this season, Musgrove needed 77 pitches to navigate three innings, giving up two runs on three hits and two walks in an 8-7 win by the Padres in 11 innings on April 25.

–Field Level Media

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