Padres Not Very Good, but Back Them in Home Opener vs. Giants

wil myers padres

Matthew Jordan

Thursday, April 6, 2017 10:26 PM GMT

Thursday, Apr. 6, 2017 10:26 PM GMT

It’s not exactly the sexiest pitching matchup in baseball Friday night when San Francisco visits NL West rival San Diego to open a three-game series at Petco Park, but you can make money off bad pitchers, too.

MLB season record: 2-1

San Francisco Giants At San Diego Padres

Will any major American professional sports city have a worse 2017 than the beautiful town of San Diego? The NFL’s Chargers left town early this year for Los Angeles even though they won’t even have their own stadium (it’s owned by the Rams) and will play 2017 & ’18 in a 30,000-set soccer venue.

Meanwhile, the Padres are going to be quite terrible as they opened this week losing three of four at the Dodgers and scoring just 10 total runs. The Fathers were given an MLB-low wins total of 65.5 entering the season and that might be optimistic. Without looking at their roster, can you even name me five players? First baseman Wil Myers is a good player and an All-Star. Shortstop Erick Aybar, a first-year Padre, has had a solid career but is trending down. Third baseman Yangervis Solarte is OK. If this isn’t the lowest-scoring team in the NL this year, I’ll be shocked. Let’s just say not one Padre position player or pitcher would be starting on, say, the Cubs or Red Sox.

The Giants, who closed their opening four-game set in Arizona on Thursday night, are hoping to have projected leadoff man and center fielder Denard Span back in the starting lineup Friday. He was in there on opening day Sunday in Arizona and was 2-for-5 but has been dealing with hip tightness since. Span had surgery on the same hip in 2015. He hit .266 with 11 homers, 53 RBIs and 12 steals last year, his first as a Giant.


Probable Pitchers

San Francisco could have gone with ace lefty Madison Bumgarner on normal rest here. All the Cy Young candidate did Sunday in Arizona was strikeout 11 in seven innings while hitting two home runs. Alas, the Giants’ bullpen blew a couple of leads and Bumgarner took a no-decision. He will start Saturday’s Game 2.

Instead, the Giants go with what appears to be the weak link of their rotation in 32-year-old right-hander Matt Cain. He was one of the NL’s best pitchers from 2007-2012 and was rewarded with a huge contract. Cain has been mostly a bust since. He hasn’t pitched more than 90.1 innings in any of the past there seasons due to injury. In 2016, he was 4-8 with a 5.64 ERA in 89.1 innings.

This spring, Cain beat out Tyler Blach for the No. 5 spot in the rotation, at least for now, even though Cain had a 7.82 ERA and 37 hits allowed in just 25 1/3 innings. It’s also possible the team could shuffle both Cain and Blach through the No. 5 spot. I can promise you this: The Giants don’t want Cain reaching 200 innings this year. Why? If he hits that mark, Cain would vest a $21.5 million option for next season. Cain threw just a third of an inning last year against the Padres. Aybar is 2-for-2 career against him. Solarte is 0-for-3.

San Diego goes with Luis Perdomo. The 23-year-old was 9-10 with a 5.71 ERA and 1.59 WHIP over 146.2 innings last year as a rookie. He made 35 appearances, 20 of them starts. Perdomo was arguably the team’s best starter in the second half of last season at 6-6 with a 4.30 ERA after the All-Star break. He had a 2.41 ERA in five Cactus League starts this spring.

Perdomo was 1-0 with a 4.30 ERA in 14.2 innings vs. the Giants in 2016. They hit .317 off him with 19 hits and eight strikeouts. Span is 3-for-9 against him. Joe Panik is 2-for-4 with two RBIs. Buster Posey is 2-for-6 with a double and RBI. Brandon Crawford is 1-for-6.

The Giants are just 2-8 in their past 10 vs. the Padres, and San Francisco is 2-7 in Cain’s past nine on the road. I wouldn’t recommend backing San Diego often this year, but do it here. Every team gets fired up for its home opener.

MLB Free Pick: Padres +115Best Line Offered: BetOnline

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