MLB: Randy Vasquez, Padres look to subdue Rockies in series opener


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Randy Vasquez has been left with quite a tall bar to clear.

Four straight San Diego Padres starters have worked at least five innings and allowed two or fewer hits. It’s believed to be the first time it’s happened in 131 years, according to research from Elias Sports Bureau.

Vasquez will try to make it five in a row on Monday night when he gets the call for the opener of a three-game series against the visiting Colorado Rockies.

The hard-throwing right-hander, one of five players acquired by San Diego in the Juan Soto trade this offseason, will make his fourth start for the Padres. Vasquez (0-1, 4.50 ERA) has lasted no longer than five innings in any of his appearances.

His most recent outing, on Tuesday night, was his best. Although Vasquez went only 4 1/3 innings at the Chicago Cubs, he gave up just one run on five hits with no walks and six strikeouts.

“I’ve been able to get more confidence, more trust, in that curveball,” Vasquez said through an interpreter. “As long as it keeps working, I know it will develop into a good pitch for myself.”

Vasquez will make his second appearance this year and in his career against Colorado. He worked only 2 2/3 innings on April 25 in Denver, giving up four runs on six hits with two walks and two strikeouts in his team’s 10-9 loss.

San Diego enters the game with four straight series wins, including one over the weekend against the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Padres benefited from Yu Darvish’s dominating performance on Sunday, as he scattered two hits over seven innings in a 4-0 victory.

Meanwhile, Colorado makes the trip out west after its best series of the year. The Rockies polished off a weekend sweep of the World Series champion Texas Rangers, prevailing 3-1 on Sunday behind a two-run homer from Ezequiel Tovar and five solid innings by Ty Blach.

Aiding Blach was a defense that turned three double plays and made three other above-average catches that quashed potential scoring threats.

“When you have that going for you defensively,” Blach said, “it makes it that much easier to go out there and pound the zone.”

Colorado set an MLB record to start the season by trailing in 31 consecutive games. The Rockies, however, corrected course by getting better pitching and taking advantage of their young, athletic core that is strong defensively.

Colorado will hope that Dakota Hudson (0-6, 6.35) can tap into that defense and the pitcher-friendly conditions at Petco Park to stretch its winning streak to five games. Hudson is coming off a 5-0 loss Tuesday night to San Francisco, lasting just 3 2/3 innings and allowing four runs off five hits and five walks with two strikeouts.

In four career outings against the Padres, Hudson is 1-1 with a 5.00 ERA. He matched up against Vasquez last month and was pounded in 3 1/3 innings, allowing six runs on six hits with four walks and four strikeouts.

–Field Level Media


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