|Brewers face Padres' Paddack amid playoff push|
The San Diego Padres were eliminated from any semblance of playoff contention long ago. Even so, rookie Chris Paddack will get one more chance Tuesday night to impact the pennant race.
Paddack will make what is expected to be his final start as the visiting Padres face the surging Milwaukee Brewers in the second game of a four-game series.
Paddack (9-7, 3.38 ERA) is scheduled to oppose the Brewers' Brandon Woodruff (11-3, 3.75 ERA) in a battle of right-handers.
The Brewers remained red-hot Monday night, when Cory Spangenberg collected three RBIs against his former team and Zach Davies combined with three relievers on a two-hitter in a 5-1 win over the Padres, who dropped their fifth straight.
The win was the 10th in the last 11 games for the Brewers (81-69), who remained one game behind the Chicago Cubs in the race for the second National League wild card and three games back of the first-place St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Central.
The Cubs beat the Cincinnati Reds 8-2 while the Cardinals edged the Washington Nationals 4-2.
Paddack will give the Brewers a taste of the type of pitcher they'll face if they can advance to the postseason. While the 23-year-old isn't likely to win the Rookie of the Year in a loaded NL race, Paddack has established himself as one of the brightest young starters in the game by striking out 144 batters over 135 2/3 innings and limiting opposing batters to a .209 average.
Ending his rookie season with a spate of starts against playoff contenders can only help in the development of Paddack, who earned the win in his previous start by limiting the Cubs to three hits over six scoreless innings Wednesday in the Padres' 4-0 victory. The Brewers will be the sixth straight contender Paddack has faced dating back to Aug. 16.
"Pitching in a road environment against a playoff-type club (that) is fighting and every game matters, it's good for him," Padres manager Andy Green told reporters.
Paddack is expected to be shut down following Tuesday's start. He has already thrown 45 2/3 more innings than he did last season between Class-A and Double-A.
While the Padres (68-82) hope Paddack gets a taste of a postseason environment, the Brewers will be looking to see if Woodruff can help them complete their playoff push and perhaps aid them in the postseason.
It will be Woodruff's first start since July 21, when he sustained a strained left oblique while pitching against the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Brewers manager Craig Counsell said Woodruff would be more of an opener on Tuesday, though he didn't reveal a pitch limit. Woodruff eventually will give way to Gio Gonzalez, who hasn't pitched in relief since he was a rookie in 2009.
"If you lay it out, probably three outings is what we can get from him (in the regular season)," Counsell told reporters Monday regarding Woodruff. "There's an ideal scenario how those outings would go. If that happens, we may be able to build him up a little bit."
Paddack has never faced the Brewers. Woodruff is 0-1 with a 5.63 ERA in two games (one start) against the Padres.
--Field Level Media