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News » Diamondbacks-Padres Preview 2008-07-30

Diamondbacks-Padres Preview 2008-07-30

Diamondbacks-Padres Preview 2008-07-30
One day after Doug Davis nearly completely shut down the lowly San Diego Padres, teammate Dan Haren looks to do the same as the NL West-leading Arizona Diamondbacks conclude their three-game series at Petco Park on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, Davis gave up a single to Brian Giles with two outs in the seventh inning, ending his bid for a perfect game. Davis, who underwent surgery for cancer this season, combined with two relievers on a two-hitter for the Diamondbacks (54-52) in their 3-0 win over the Padres (42-66).

"I was conscious about it the whole time," Davis said. "I was trying to challenge the hitters. I was just thinking throw strikes and let them hit it. That's what I was thinking the whole game."

Arizona has won six of its last eight to remain one game ahead of the second-place Los Angeles Dodgers. The Diamondbacks open a key four-game series at Dodger Stadium on Thursday.

The Diamondbacks are trying to move three games over .500 for the first time since June 23, and they appear to have the right person taking the mound.

Arizona has won eight of Haren's last 10 starts, and the right-hander is 4-1 with a 1.26 ERA in his last eight. He has 57 strikeouts and nine walks in 57 innings in those outings

Haren (10-5, 2.56 ERA) gave up two runs and nine hits and matched a season high with nine strikeouts in eight innings of a 10-2 win over San Francisco on Friday.

"Danny, that's pretty much what we see every time from him," Arizona manager Bob Melvin said

Haren has split two starts against the Padres this season, posting a 1.29 ERA in those games. He is 1-1 with a 1.73 ERA in four career starts versus San Diego.

Arizona scored all its runs in the sixth inning Tuesday, as Conor Jackson scored on a fielding error, while Alex Romero drove in a pair. Romero also made a spectacular catch with bases loaded and two outs in the eight inning against the wall in right-center, the deepest part of cavernous Petco, to preserve the win for Davis.

"The catch out in right field was something amazing," Davis said. "When (pinch-hitter Jody Gerut) hit the ball, I thought he had no chance to catch it, let alone staying in the park. Everybody jumped up like we won the pennant."

The Padres have scored the second-fewest runs in the majors (411), but had scored 26 during a four-game winning streak prior to Tuesday's loss. San Diego, owners of the second-worst record in the NL, struck out 10 times in falling to a major league-worst 3-13 at home since June 21.

Cha Seung Baek (3-4, 4.86) looks to win consecutive starts for the first time in a year when he takes the ball in the series finale.

Baek allowed four runs and seven hits in 5 1-3 innings of a 6-5 win over Pittsburgh on Friday. Baek's victory was only his second in his last nine starts, and he has not won back-to-back starts since May 26 and 31, 2007, while pitching for Seattle.

His only other win in the past two months came at Arizona on July 4, when the right-hander gave up two hits and matched a career high with seven strikeouts in six scoreless innings of a 5-1 victory.

Despite pitching at spacious Petco Park, Baek hasn't had any success there, going 0-4 with a 6.08 ERA in five starts.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: July 30, 2008

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