In the first of a three-game series between the San Diego Padres (19-20) and the Chicago Cubs (19-20) at Petco Park, James Shields (5-0, 3.91 ERA) and Jason Hammel (3-1, 3.11 ERA) take the mound. The game starts at 10:10 p.m. ET on Tuesday, May. 19 and will air on FSN-SD and WGN.
In his last start, Shields pitched 0.0 inning, allowing zero runs in a 10-0 loss to the Nationals. Justin Upton (.293, 28 Rs, 10 HRs, 27 RBIs, 8 SBs) continued his strong season Sunday, going 3 for 3 with two runs, two home runs, and two RBIs. In his career against the Padres, Hammel is 4-3 with a 5.06 ERA, 1.43 WHIP, and 64 strikeouts. Kris Bryant (.291, 19 Rs, 4 HRs, 24 RBIs, 2 SBs) went 1 for 2 Sunday.
Oddsmakers have deemed this game an even matchup and the Over/Under (O/U) is presently unavailable. They have been a terror on the base paths, ranking fifth in all of baseball with 29 steals. San Diego's pitching staff has fallen apart in the past 10 games. Its average runs allowed per game rose to 6.2 during that span, compared to its 4.9 season average. An area where the Padres are particularly strong is striking batters out, where they average 8.5 K's per game.
They sport the second-ranked offense in the NL, averaging five runs per game. The Cubs have racked up 36 steals on the year, making them one of the most threatening base-running teams in the league. Shifting to the pitching staff, they allow just 2.9 hits per road game, good for fifth in the NL.
In their previous three games this season, the Padres have a 2-1 record. This game will feature Hammel (RHP) on the mound against the Padres, who have a 13-16 record when they take on a right-handed starter. Taking the hill against the Cubs will be the right-hander Shields. They sport a 17-13 record against righties.
Predictions: SU Winner - SD
Chicago has won 53% (9-8) of its games when leading after 7 innings. However, San Diego has won 56% (10-8) of its games when taking a late lead.
The Padres managed to give up six walks in their last game. They'll have to pick it up against the Cubs who are coming in with a 5-2 record against opponents who give up that many walks or more.
When they are outhit, the Padres are 2-17. The Cubs have a 5-14 record when opponents outhit them.
San Diego and Chicago both rank in the top half of the league in home runs. San Diego sits at 12th with 36 home runs this season and Chicago ranks 15th with 34.
San Diego and Chicago both rank in the top 10 of the league in hits. San Diego sits at seventh with 8.72 hits per game and Chicago ranks 10th with 8.51.
Ranking 18th, San Diego is in the bottom half of the league for its on-base plus slugging percentage (.704). Chicago ranks in the top half at 15th with an OPS of .718.
The Cubs are 12-11 in games where they allow one or more home runs. The Padres are 11-16 when they allow at least one homer.