The Padres are set to face the rival Los Angeles Dodgers for the second consecutive weekend, and San Diego manager Bob Melvin is trying to set a decisive tone before his team visits the National League West leaders beginning on Friday.
Melvin not only was ejected by plate umpire Brock Ballou on Thursday during the Padres’ 5-3 defeat against the Minnesota Twins in Minneapolis, but he vented afterward about his team’s inability to meet early-season expectations.
“I just don’t think there’s enough tenacity throughout the course of the game,” Melvin said. “We show signs of it. We show spurts of it. We come out like we should, and then we don’t sustain it for the entire game. That’s the problem.”
Melvin knows the roster is talented. He is just tired of waiting for the results to match the ability.
“We have guys that can perform better,” Melvin said. “We’re going to, but it’s time to quit just talking about it. It’s time to go out there and do it.”
The Padres lost two of three games to the visiting Dodgers last weekend before dropping two of three to the Twins this week. San Diego scored three runs or fewer in four of the past five games, losing all four. The Padres went 1-for-7 with runners in scoring position on Thursday and 3-for-22 (.136) in the Minnesota series.
Against the Dodgers, the Padres got past left-hander Clayton Kershaw to earn a 5-2 victory in the series opener on May 5 but lost 2-1 on Saturday and 5-2 in 10 innings on Sunday.
San Diego left-hander Blake Snell (1-5, 4.89 ERA) will take the mound on Friday after he gave up just two runs on one hit over six innings on Saturday against the Dodgers, only to end up with the loss. The lone hit he yielded was Chris Taylor’s two-run homer in the fourth inning.
Snell is 1-2 with a 2.56 ERA lifetime against the Dodgers in 10 regular-season starts. He is 1-0 with a 2.35 ERA in three career postseason starts vs. Los Angeles.
The Dodgers will counter with right-hander Dustin May (4-1, 2.68 ERA), who will match up against Snell for the second time in six days. May gave up three hits in six scoreless innings for the victory at San Diego on Saturday, and he has won each of his past three starts.
May is 2-4 with a 3.44 ERA against the Padres in 11 regular-season games (eight starts). He is 1-0 with a 0.00 ERA two playoff outings (one start) vs. San Diego.
The Dodgers enter the series after a 4-2 road trip, having won the last two games at Milwaukee. Los Angeles also is riding a run of 10 victories in its past 12 games.
The Dodgers lead the National League in home runs with 64 after adding three more in an 8-1, series-ending victory over the Brewers on Wednesday. Freddie Freeman and Will Smith hit back-to-back shots to give them six each, and rookie Miguel Vargas added his fourth.
After struggling against left-handers all season, the Dodgers got the best of Eric Lauer and Wade Miley at Milwaukee on consecutive days. Now comes a date with Snell.
“I think you can pick any stats you want in the first month of the season, but over the course of 162 (games), things are going to work themselves out — especially with a talented group like we have in this clubhouse,” Freeman said. “So hopefully that’s a step in the right direction. We’ve got another one on Friday right with Snell, so hopefully that trend continues.”
–Field Level Media