History will be made at Petco Park on Saturday.
For the first time since the San Diego Padres’ downtown home opened in 2004, it will host a scheduled doubleheader.
Actually, it is the first of two doubleheaders scheduled this season, and both will be between the Padres and Colorado Rockies. These doubleheaders are scheduled to make up games lost during the canceled first few weeks of the season.
Saturday will be a split doubleheader.
The first game will pit Colorado’s Ryan Feltner (1-2, 5.85 ERA) facing San Diego’s Nick Martinez (2-3, 3.99) in a match of right-handers. Left-handers will take over in the second game with Kyle Freeland (1-5, 4.53) of the Rockies matched against Padres’ rookie MacKenzie Gore (4-1, 1.50).
Mike Clevinger was scheduled to start Saturday’s first game for San Diego but was scratched late Friday night due to an undisclosed illness. Clevinger returned from a second round of Tommy John surgery this year, but has made only four starts around two stints on the injured list.
The Padres enter the doubleheader on both offensive and pitching runs — winning six of their last seven games while out-scoring the opposition 51-17, with 11 of those runs allowed coming in Monday’s loss to the New York Mets. Padres pitchers also have four shutouts in the last seven games.
Over the past seven games, the Padres have hit .270 (68-for-252) with 18 doubles, two triples and seven homers for a .440 slugging percentage.
“For the past week, we’ve gotten hitting from the top to the bottom of the lineup,” San Diego manager Bob Melvin said. “It’s what we’ve been talking about. A lot of guys we’ve been waiting on to contribute are contributing.
Meanwhile, the Rockies needed 3 2/3 innings from the bullpen Friday night as they played their 10th game in 10 days. Four of those games went extra innings. Now they are facing a doubleheader.
“Any time you have a doubleheader at the end of a run like this, pitching is a premium,” Rockies manager Bud Black said. “We’d like the starters to go a little deeper.”
Feltner, 25, the Rockies’ fourth-round pick in the 2018 draft, is being recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque as the 27th man to start Saturday’s first game for the Rockies. He will be facing a Rockies rival from the National League West for the first time. In his last start in the majors, Feltner gave up six runs on seven hits over three innings in a loss against Atlanta on Sunday.
Freeland will be making his 12th start of the season. He held the Braves to one run over seven innings in his last outing on June 4. Freeland has made 15 career appearances (13 starts) against the Padres with a 3-5 record and a 3.96 ERA. He held the Padres to one run over six innings in his most recent outing against San Diego last July 29.
Martinez is currently the No. 7 man in the Padres’ seven-man rotation. Two of his last four appearances have come in a piggyback relief role. Martinez has faced the Rockies twice in his career, but not since the 2015 season. He owns a 12.60 ERA without a decision against them.
Gore, the Padres’ first-round pick in the 2017, will be facing the Rockies for the first time. Over his last four appearances (three starts), Gore has given up one run on 11 hits and eight walks with 29 strikeouts in 22 innings for an 0.41 ERA.
–Field Level Media