Greinke was hit hard by the Dodgers in his last start on Friday, giving up 10 hits, three walks and five earned runs in five innings, but the Padres could be just what the doctor ordered. He has an 8-1 career record with a 2.02 ERA vs. San Diego in 16 starts while limiting the Padres to a .184 batting average. At Petco Park, he is 4-1 with a 1.90 ERA in 10 starts.
While Greinke's fastball velocity was a concern during spring training, his 91.2 average in three regular-season starts is close to where it's been over the past four seasons. One early red flag is a hard-hit percentage of 39.6 -- well above his career mark of 28.4.
Chacin, who pitched briefly with the D-backs in 2015, has a 5-3 career mark vs. Arizona with a 3.04 ERA in 13 starts. He took the loss in Atlanta on Friday, giving up four runs on eight hits and four walks in five innings. He worked 6 2/3 scoreless innings against the Giants in the start prior to Atlanta.
"He's a guy that has to command the baseball," Padres manager Andy Green said. "He doesn't have overpowering stuff. He is a guy that has to locate and locate well. When he does that, he is really, really good. That has always been his challenge."
Jake RothJake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
Timing is everything
The D-backs lead the majors with 78 runs scored, while the Padres are 27th with 47. A major difference is their performance with men in scoring position. The D-backs are hitting a major-league-leading .347 -- 42 for 121 with 54 RBI. Chris Owings (6 for 9, 4 RBI) and Yasmany Tomas (6 for 15, 6 RBI) and Jake Lamb (4 for 16, 11 RBI) have done the most damage
The Padres rank 29th at .177 -- 17 for 96 with 23 RBI. That pretty much accounts for the 31-run difference between the two teams. Yangervis Solarte is 7 for 18 with 9 RBI -- the rest of the team is 10 for 78 (.128).
Room for improvement
The D-backs' fast start has come despite less-than-ideal defensive play. Defensive stats are notoriously squishy, but no matter how you measure it, the D-backs haven't measured up. They rank 29th in Defensive Runs Saved (-12), 29th in fielding percentage (.974), 26th in Defensive Efficiency Rating (.676), have the second-most errors (14) and have turned the fewest double plays (7).