Arizona Diamondbacks (57-80) at San Diego Padres (65-71), 10:10 p.m. (ET)
09/02/2014 10:43 AM
09/02/2014 10:50 AM
However, the Padres didn't seem to think so in the early part of the 2014 season, and the initial subpar performance at Petco Park is why the early September series with the visiting Arizona Diamondbacks -- which the teams will continue with game two of four on Tuesday night -- means little for the hosts other than cosmetics.
The recently surging Padres have won 15 of their last 18 games in the friendly Southern California confines, a run that's moved them within six games of a .500 overall mark for the season. They're 19-12 since July 28, but the season was largely sabotaged thanks to a .217 batting average and 24-26 record in their initial 50 home games.
The heroics were shared by a Double-A call-up in Monday's opener, when Cory Spangenberg singled in the decisive two runs in the Padres' 3-1 win -- becoming just the third player in franchise history to drive in more than a run in his big league debut.
"It's just nice to share this moment with (family and friends) because they've put in as much time and effort with this as I did," Spangenberg said.
The Diamondbacks, meanwhile, have managed a single extra-base hit in their last three on the road.
Arizona faces San Diego youngster Odrisamer Despaigne in game two.
The rookie is 2-1 with a 2.25 earned run average in six appearances at Petco Park, while his record is three games under .500 and his ERA is over 4.00 in six road outings.
He dropped a 5-1 decision to the Diamondbacks in Arizona on Aug. 22, then rebounded to pitch seven innings with one earned run allowed in San Diego's 10-inning defeat of Milwaukee in his most recent start on Wednesday.
He beat Arizona, 2-1, in his second career start -- at home -- on June 29.
The visitors counter with lefty Wade Miley, whose posted a 2.45 ERA in his last four starts, but is 0-2 in that stretch thanks to five runs of offensive support.
On Wednesday, he dropped a 3-1 decision to Clayton Kershaw and the Los Angeles Dodgers after allowing three runs in six innings.
He's gotten two no-decisions against the Padres in 2014 after allowing six runs in 14 innings.
On Monday, Spangenberg also made a diving stop with runners at first and second base in the first inning to potentially save a run.
Alexi Amarista also drove in a run for the Padres, who were coming off a 7-1 loss to the Dodgers on Sunday after winning their previous three games with walk-off hits in extra innings.
Tyson Ross (13-12) threw six innings and gave up one run in his 14th straight quality start, extending his Padres record. The right-hander struck out eight, walked two and surrendered six hits.
Arizona has won eight of its 13 matchups with the Padres this season.
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