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San Diego Padres (68-93) at Arizona Diamondbacks (68-93)
Sunday, October 02 - 3:10 PM EST
Chase Field, Phoenix, Arizona
Despite what has been yet another disappointing year for the Arizona Diamondbacks, they might be able to find some peace in ending the season strong. The Diamondbacks hope to avoid their second last-place finish in the National League West in three years Sunday, when wrap up a three-game home series with the San Diego Padres.
Arizona traded for Shelby Miller and opened up its wallet in the offseason to land Zack Greinke in free agency with an eye on ending a four-year playoff drought, but the club has spent a large part of its season in the division cellar instead. The Diamondbacks pulled into a fourth-place tie with the Padres with Saturday's 9-5 victory - their fourth win in six tries - and tied a franchise record by recording four of their six stolen bases during a five-run first inning. Paul Goldschmidt finished with a career-high three steals to become the sixth first baseman to reach 30 in a season, while Archie Bradley struck out a career-high 11 to lead Arizona to its third straight win. Meanwhile, San Diego has dropped three straight and must win in the season finale if it hopes to avoid its third last-place division finish since last qualifying for the postseason in 2006.
TV: 3:10 p.m. ET, FSN San Diego, FSN Arizona
PITCHING MATCHUP: Padres RH Paul Clemens (4-5, 4.27 ERA) vs. Diamondbacks RH Matt Koch (1-1, 2.25)
Although he hasn't completed six innings in any of his 13 starts since September 2013, Clemens remained sharp in Tuesday's win over the Los Angeles Dodgers, permitting one run and three hits in five frames. The South Carolina native is 2-0 with a 0.57 ERA over his last three trips to the mound, yielding exactly three hits each time. Clemens allowed two unearned runs in 5 2/3 innings of a no-decision versus the Diamondbacks on Sept. 20 and has yet to factor in the decision in any of his three appearances (two starts) against them despite posting a 2.31 ERA.
Koch did not allow a hit over his first five frames during his first career start at Washington on Tuesday, but he was pulled after giving up his only hit and walk to open the sixth inning. The 25-year-old Louisville product, who was charged with two runs in the outing, was equally stingy in five relief appearances since arriving to the majors, giving up only one run and three hits over seven innings. Koch has yet to surrender a run in six frames at home and is holding opposing batters to a .100 average.
1. Diamondbacks 2B Jean Segura, whose 93 second-half hits are the most in club history, on Saturday became the first NL player to record 200 hits and 100 runs in a season since Milwaukee's Ryan Braun in 2009.
2. San Diego rookie RF Hunter Renfroe went 2-for-4 and drove in a run Saturday, giving him three two-hit efforts and 12 RBIs during his five-game hitting streak.
3. With his three stolen bases Saturday, Goldschmidt joined Houston's Jeff Bagwell (1997) as the only first basemen in MLB history to record a 20-homer, 30-steal season.
PREDICTION: Diamondbacks 3, Padres 2