McDonald hopes to get untracked in opener with PadresAug 10, 2012 - 2:57 PM
McDonald, a 28-year-old California native, was 10-3 on the season after a 9-8 win at Colorado on July 18 in which he allowed six runs on nine hits in six innings.
He's dropped two decisions in three starts since, however, losing to the Chicago Cubs and Houston and getting a no-decision against Cincinnati, while allowing 18 hits and 14 runs in 17 innings.
His earned run average, which had dropped as low as 2.19 in mid-June, has since risen to 3.42.
Coming in to 2012, McDonald had never won more than nine games.
He's 1-1 in six career meetings with the Padres with a 5.87 ERA in 15 1/3 innings.
San Diego goes with former National League all-star Edinson Volquez, who had a four-decision win streak snapped in his last start.
Acquired from the Cincinnati Reds in the offseason, Volquez began his initial year with San Diego at 3-7 after a 7-3 loss to Texas on June 19.
He subsequently reeled off four straight wins across seven starts before walking four batters and giving up four runs in just 1 2/3 innings of a 6-2 loss to the New York Mets on Aug. 4.
He's 1-0 in seven career starts against Pittsburgh with a 3.67 ERA in 41 2/3 innings.
Volquez was a 17-game winner with the Reds in 2008, but slumped with injuries and ineffectiveness afterward - winning just 13 more games with the Reds from 2009-2011.
On Thursday in Pittsburgh, Jason Kubel hit a pair of two-run homers and the Arizona Diamondbacks took down the Pirates, 6-3, to split a four-game series.
Michael McKenry, Jordy Mercer and Starling Marte each had an RBI for the Pirates.
Wandy Rodriguez (7-11) allowed four runs on seven hits over six innings to take the loss. He fell to 0-2 as a member of the Pirates.
Pittsburgh remained 2 1/2 games behind the Reds in the National League Central Division. Cincinnati lost it fifth straight, 5-3, against the Chicago Cubs.
On Wednesday in San Diego, Clayton Richard tossed his second career shutout and the Padres finished off a three-game sweep of the Chicago Cubs with a 2-0 victory.
Richard (9-11) scattered five hits - all singles - and two walks while fanning five for the Padres, who completed a successful 5-1 homestand.
Will Venable and Yonder Alonso each knocked in a run for the victors.
This is the first meeting of the teams in 2012. San Diego won last year's season series, 4-2, including a three-game sweep in Pittsburgh from Aug. 5-7.
- SAN DIEGO: 9
Aug 10 10:29 PM
- Dale Thayer starts the inning for the Padres, batting 9th.
Padres 9, Pirates 8 Bot 7, 0 OutsAug 10 9:52 PM
- Rod Barajas single to center scored Garrett Jones with two out. On the play, Pedro Alvarez advances to third. Runners on first and third and Clint Barmes due up.
Padres 7, Pirates 8 Bot 6, 2 OutsAug 10 9:32 PM
- Chris Resop enters the game for the Pirates with none on and one out, batting 9th.
Padres 7, Pirates 7 Top 5, 1 OutAug 10 9:01 PM
- Alexi Amarista single to right scored Jesus Guzman with one out. Runner on first and Everth Cabrera due up.
Padres 4, Pirates 7 Top 5, 1 OutAug 10 8:54 PM
- Pinch-Hitter Jesus Guzman double to center scored Cameron Maybin and John Baker with one out. Runner on second and Alexi Amarista due up.
Padres 3, Pirates 7 Top 5, 1 OutAug 10 8:52 PM
- Pedro Alvarez single to center scored Andrew McCutchen and Garrett Jones with two out. Runner on first and Rod Barajas due up.
Padres 1, Pirates 7 Bot 4, 2 OutsAug 10 8:38 PM
- Travis Snider one-out, three-run Home Run (1) to right center scored Clint Barmes and James McDonald. Andrew McCutchen due up.
Padres 1, Pirates 5 Bot 4, 1 OutAug 10 8:23 PM
- Garrett Jones one-out, solo Home Run (17) to right. Neil Walker due up.
Padres 1, Pirates 2 Bot 3, 1 OutAug 10 8:02 PM
- Starling Marte single to left scored Clint Barmes with two out. On the play, James McDonald advances to second. Runners on first and second and Travis Snider due up.
Padres 1, Pirates 1 Bot 2, 2 OutsAug 10 7:50 PM
- Alexi Amarista lead-off Home Run (5) to right. Everth Cabrera due up.
Padres 1, Pirates 0 Top 1, 0 OutsAug 10 7:06 PM
- SAN DIEGO: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
Aug 10 7:06 PM
- Cards try for 30th victory in finale with Padres 10:41a
- Samardzija eyes another win in the Steel City 10:16a
- Descalso, Wainwright leads Cards over Padres 2:35a
- Snider slams Pirates past Cubs 1:46a
- Wainwright tries to find win column versus Padres Tue
- Cubs' Garza makes 2013 debut at Pittsburgh Tue
- Marquis, Padres get by Cardinals Tue
- Streaking Cards hit the road to battle Padres Mon
- Padres club Nationals Sun
- Alvarez homers, Pittsburgh pitches past Houston Sun
- Haren, Cashner face off in San Diego Sun
- Locke eyes a win in rubber match against Astros Sun