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Padres tap Zach Davies to start Game 2 against Dodgers; lineups named

Padres starting pitcher Zach Davies throws to the Texas Rangers in the first inning in August in Arlington.
Padres starting pitcher Zach Davies throws to the Texas Rangers in the first inning of game in Arlington, Texas, in August. Davies will be on the same mound Wednesday night for Game 2 of NLDS.
(ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Zach Davies led the San Diego Padres with seven victories and 69 1/3 innings in 2020. He has been named the starter for Game 2 of the NLDS against the Dodgers.

The Padres are turning to their most reliable (or durable) pitcher and asking him to help even this NL Division Series against the Dodgers.

Zach Davies was named Wednesday morning to start Game 2, which starts at 6:08 p.m. PDT (FS1). The Padres trail the series after a 5-1 defeat Tuesday in Game 1.

The 27-year-old right-hander led the Padres with seven victories and 69 1/3 innings in 2020. He also lasted the longest across his two regular season starts against the Dodgers (13 IP), although Davies lost both.

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He received no run support while scattering two runs, four hits and two walks across seven innings in a 6-0 loss at Dodger Stadium in mid-August. The next month, he allowed three runs in six innings in a 4-2 defeat at Petco Park.

Yes, that’s two quality starts, which is really what the Padres need more than anything right now.

To date, their starting pitchers have accounted for seven innings through four postseason games while allowing 10 of the 21 runs scored against the staff.

That’s a 12.86 ERA.

Davies, of course, accounted for four runs in two innings in his first playoff start against a Cardinals team that had battered him to the tune of a .290/.329/.460 batting line during his previous life as an NL Central rival.

The Dodgers, on the other hand, have only faced Davies twice a year in four of the last eight seasons and had been held to one run in 25 innings between 2017 and 2019 before this year’s meetings.

Here’s a look at how they’ve fared against Davies in 2020 (their only extra-base hit is from Edwin Rios, who is not on the Dodgers’ NLDS roster):

Zach Davies against the 2020 Dodgers
(Baseball-reference.com)

With Dinelson Lamet (biceps) out for the Division Series, that leaves Chris Paddack as the likeliest option for Game 3.

Paddack has a 6.94 ERA in five career starts against L.A., including 9.00 this year.

As for Davies’ offense, the Padres are again reverting to the variation that they throw at left-handed pitchers: Shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. is leading off and center fielder Trent Grisham – whose game-tying home run off Clayton Kershaw triggered a come-from-behind victory last month at Petco Park – will bat ninth.

Tommy Pham is also again the designated hitter, leaving left field to Jurickson Profar.

Updates

2:03 p.m. Oct. 7, 2020: This story was updated with lineups for both teams.


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