Arizona Diamondbacks left-hander Robbie Ray is finishing the season strong, and that likely isn’t a good omen for the San Diego Padres as they host the finale of their three-game series on Wednesday. The All-Star, who has won five consecutive starts since returning from the disabled list, is looking to improve to 4-0 against San Diego this season and help protect his team’s 4 1/2-game lead over Colorado for the first wild-card spot in the National League.
Ray has posted a 1.39 ERA and struck out 55 batters in 32 1/3 innings since his return from nearly a four-week absence, which stemmed from being struck in the head by a line drive on July 28. The 25-year-old has fanned 10 or more in each of his last four starts, including 12 over six frames while allowing two runs and four hits in a win over the Padres on Sept. 10. Ray will be trying to prevent his club from being swept as San Diego posted a 6-2 win on Tuesday. Wil Myers is 3-for-7 with two doubles in the series but has fared poorly against Ray, going 2-for-14 with eight strikeouts.
TV: 9:10 p.m. ET, FSN Arizona, FSN San Diego
PITCHING MATCHUP: LH Robbie Ray (14-5, 2.74 ERA) vs. Padres RH Dinelson Lamet (7-7, 4.15)
Ray defeated San Francisco in his last turn, when he allowed two runs - one earned - and six hits with 10 strikeouts in seven innings. He has posted a 1.33 ERA and allowed just nine hits in 20 1/3 frames against the Padres this season while striking out 29. Ray, who is 2-1 with a 1.31 ERA in three career starts at Petco Park, is 4-4 with a 3.35 ERA in eight overall career outings against San Diego.
Lamet is 0-3 over his last five turns despite allowing fewer than three runs in each of his last four outings. The 25-year-old has recorded a 2.44 ERA and .185 batting average against over his last 10 starts as he continues to show he will be a key cog in the team’s rotation next year. Lamet was roughed up by the Diamondbacks in his third career start on June 6, when he gave up nine runs - seven earned - and five hits in three-plus innings while matched against Ray.
1. Diamondbacks 1B Paul Goldschmidt is hitless in eight at-bats in the series and batting just .154 with two homers and six RBIs in 52 at-bats this month.
2. The Padres are 4-1 against the Diamondbacks in September but still trail the season series, 10-8.
3. Arizona CF A.J. Pollock went 3-for-3 with two solo homers and a double on Tuesday, giving him three blasts and 12 RBIs over his last six games.
PREDICTION: Diamondbacks 3, Padres 1