The National League West is truly starting to play out like the wild wild west. With only nine games remaining on their shortened season the Friar faithful of San Diego are chasing down the Los Angeles Dodgers who lead by only 2.5 games going into Wednesday's contest.
Los Angeles has won the NL West for seven consecutive seasons while San Diego has won the NL West five times in the teams 50 year history. For the sake of division interest the Dodgers have been in need of a worthy opponent to make the division competitive again.
The Dodgers are the Padres biggest rivals. The Padres have not made any noise in the division for a while so the rivalry has been dormant, but the rivalry became active once again when Trent Grisham decided to flip his bat and stare at the Dodger dugout after homering off Clayton Kershaw on Monday night.
Dustin May has thrown for 41.2 innings this year for Los Angeles and will making his ninth start. He has 1-1 record with a 2.81 ERA and has not surrendered more than two earned runs in any of his eight starts. Chris Paddack for San Diego will get his eleventh start of the season and has managed a 3-4 record with a 4.74 ERA. This will be Paddack's third crack at the Dodgers this year.
Dodgers See Padres in Rearview MirrorThe Los Angeles Dodgers have won the NL West every season since 2013. They are however feeling the pressure of the surging San Diego Padres. A surprising loss in game one with Clayton Kershaw on the mound pulled the Padres within a game and a half of LA going into Tuesdays matchup at Petco Park.
The Dodgers have won 8 of their 13 September games with five losses coming over the last nine games. If the Dodgers can pull out the series victory on Wednesday they will be 3.5 games ahead of San Diego with ten games left to play. After the San Diego series the Dodgers will finish off the 2020 season with series against Colorado, Oakland, and the LA Angeles.
Los Angeles was able to get a run in the first, third, and fifth inning to squeeze out a 3-1 victory in the second game of the three game series on Tuesday. Justin Turner made an immediate impact in his first game back after recovering from a hamstring issue after driving a single to deep right field to score Mookie Betts in the first.
Dustin May faced the Padres twice back in August going six innings in each contest and giving up two earned in each game. The Dodgers were able to win May's first start against the Padres 5-2 on August 4th, but lost the second start 2-1 on August 10th.
SD Eyeing 1st Playoff Appearance Since 06'San Diego is one of seven MLB organizations that have never won a World Series. The Padres have had a few successful years appearing in the playoffs five times in the 50 year history of the team. But they have not come close to the success of the their rival in Dodger blue.
"It's their reign," Padres third baseman Manny Machado said of the Dodgers two days after the Aug. 31 trade deadline in an article from ESPN.com. "And it's their division, honestly. But we're comin'. We're definitely comin'."
The Padres have won 10 of their 13 games in September to pull within 2.5 games of the Dodgers. If the Padres can secure a win on Wednesday they will be 1.5 games behind the LA with only eight games left. San Diego will end the season facing the Mariners for three games, the Angels for two games, and the Giants for three games.
The big right-hander Chris Paddack will go for the series win against LA on Wednesday. Paddack is tied for 31st with 52 strikeouts and is ranked 18th with a 1.22 WHIP. In his last start against the Dodgers he was tagged with three home runs, and a total of six earned runs back in a 11-2 loss on August 13th.