Padres, Giants set for rubber match of series

MLB Baseball

The San Francisco Giants and Padres will have some early season motivation working for them heading into the rubber match of a three-game series on Wednesday in San Diego.

Padres manager Jayce Tingler routinely stresses the importance of winning series, particularly at home. A win Wednesday would give the Padres a 5-2 record and a pair of series wins for their opening homestand.

San Francisco went 2-8 against the Padres in 2020. A victory on Wednesday for the Giants would equal that win total.

Left-hander Blake Snell (0-0, 0.00 ERA) will start for San Diego against San Francisco right-hander Kevin Gausman (0-0, 1.35).

The Padres evened the series with a 3-1 victory Tuesday night that was, essentially, San Diego’s second “win” of the day.

Four hours before the game’s first pitch, the Padres learned shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. will not need surgery to repair the partial dislocation of his left shoulder. Tatis might return from the injured list in as few as 10 days.

“Overall, it was a pretty positive medical report,” Padres general manager A.J. Preller said. “The rotator cuff, bone structure, muscle structure, all look good. There is some slight labral tearing. He’s in good spirits with full range of motion.

Preller said Tatis felt so good Tuesday that he lobbied to get back into the lineup. The Padres, however, want him to spend at least the next 10 days work on exercises to strengthen the shoulder and contemplate changes to the way he plays the game.

“We will see how he responds,” Preller said. “I wouldn’t rule anything out. We talked about risk factors a lot with the doctors. This is not something putting him at risk if he plays. We will re-evaluate if it happens again. If surgery is the answer, surgery will fix it.”

Snell will be making his second start for the Padres.

The former American Cy Young Award winner allowed four hits and struck out eight in 4 2/3 scoreless innings on Friday against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Snell tossed 86 pitches and exited one out shy of qualifying for his first win as a Padre.

Snell will be facing the Giants for the first time in his career.

Meanwhile, Gausman was San Francisco’s Opening Day starter and earned accolades from manager Gabe Kapler after his longest outing with the team. The 30-year-old Gausman held the Mariners to one run on two hits and two walks with six strikeouts in 6 2/3 innings in Seattle.

“I thought he did a great job,” Kapler said of Gausman. “It was a tremendous outing. His velocity dipped only slightly with the last couple hitters.”

Gausman was 3-3 last season with a 3.62 ERA and a 1.106 WHIP in 12 appearances (10 starts) with the Giants. He had 79 strikeouts in 59 2/3 innings with essentially a 5-to-1 strikeout-to-walk ratio.

The former first-round draft pick (fourth overall in 2012 out of LSU) did not record a decision in two appearances (one start) against the Padres in 2020. Gausman allowed three runs on six hits in 5 1/3 innings. He also struck out 10 Padres without issuing a walk.

–Field Level Media

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