Padres hope to keep rolling in opener with Rockies

10:49 AM, Jul 20, 2012   |    comments
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(Sports Network) - The San Diego Padres are coming off another series victory and will begin a new set tonight versus the NL West-rival Colorado Rockies.

The Padres will host the Rockies for three games at Petco Park and won their second straight series by taking three of four matchups with the Houston Astros. They recorded their third straight win and 11th in 16 tries with Thursday's 1-0 victory.

Logan Forsythe's RBI single in the bottom of the first inning held up and Edinson Volquez tossed a one-hit shutout to remain unbeaten in his career against the Astros (6-0). Volquez struck out five and walked three batters in his first career shutout.

"It's exciting," said Volquez. "It's the best feeling you could ever feel."

San Diego, which has won each of Volquez's last five starts and won two of three versus Los Angeles before the Houston series, is 3-1 on a seven-game homestand, but is still 13 games off the NL West lead and 12 1/2 games behind in the Wild Card standings.

The Padres had scored seven or more runs in four of the last five games before squeezing out Thursday's win with just a run. Their bullpen got a much-needed rest thanks to Volquez and has allowed only three runs in the past 23 innings.

Alexi Amarista has hit safely in each of his last eight games and 20 of his last 22 contests with an at-bat.

In eight starts with San Diego since coming over from Minnesota, Jason Marquis is 2-5 with a 3.62 earned run average and gets the nod tonight. Marquis ended a five-start drought (0-4) his last time out in a 7-2 win at Los Angeles, as he delivered six innings of two-run ball.

Marquis, a right-hander, has lost each of his four outings at Petco Park this season and is only 3-6 with a 3.05 ERA in 10 career starts there.

Colorado will kick off a six-game road trip against San Diego and Arizona this evening, and went 2-4 on a six-game homestand. It lost two of three to both Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, and dropped a 9-6 decision Wednesday night.

Carlos Gonzalez and Dexter Fowler both homered and Andrew Brown went 3-for-5 with a pair of RBI for the Rockies, who are last in the division at 15 1/2 games off the lead and second to last in the Wild Card standings. Only Houston is worse. Fowler has reached base safely 22 times in 10 games since July 5.

Jeremy Guthrie got the start for the Rockies and lasted only 2 2/3 innings, as he gave up six runs -- four earned. Matt Reynolds was saddled with the loss for surrendering three runs in only 1 2/3 frames.

"Frustration, disgust, embarrassment that I can't do what I feel like I'm capable of doing," Guthrie said. "If I throw a pitch in a certain spot, it's been hit. If I've thrown what I think is the right pitch, it's usually been the wrong pitch. When I think I've thrown something in the right location, it's typically been the wrong location."

Guthrie allowed two home runs and has now given up a National League-leading 21 this season.

Drew Pomeranz will make his ninth start of the season tonight for Colorado and hopes to get back into the win column. Pomeranz gave up a season high-tying five runs and five hits in five innings of a 5-1 loss to Philadelphia on Sunday to fall to 1-4 in eight starts with a 3.79 ERA.

Pomeranz, who tossed 6 1/3 shutout innings the start before at Washington, is 0-2 with a 3.00 ERA in two starts against the Padres this season. The southpaw never faced San Diego before in his career until this season.

The Rockies have lost five of nine matchups with the Padres in 2012 and nine of the previous 13 encounters in this series.

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