Sunday is shaping up to be quite the pitcher's duel between the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres.
Zack Greinke tries to match his single-season career high for victories and Andrew Cashner follows up his one-hit shutout in the finale of a three-game set from Petco Park.
The right-handed Greinke is 15-3 with a 2.75 earned run average in 26 starts this season for the Dodgers. That leaves him one shy of the career-best 16 games he won during his AL Cy Young-winning 2009 campaign with the Kansas City Royals. Greinke matched those 16 wins in 2011 with Milwaukee.
Greinke has not lost since July 25, winning seven straight decisions over a 10-start span. He won all five of his starts in August and is coming off a victory over Arizona on Tuesday, charged with two runs over six innings.
The 29-year-old has not allowed more than two earned runs in a start since his last loss.
Greinke, who suffered a broken collarbone during a benches-clearing brawl in San Diego on April 11 and was sidelined for a little over a month, beat the Padres on Sept. 1 with seven innings of one-run, two-hit ball. He is 3-0 in four starts against them this year with a 2.08 ERA.
Cashner, meanwhile, is coming off his first career complete game, a 2-0 win in Pittsburgh on Monday. The righty allowed just one hit and fanned seven over nine innings, giving him a 0.88 ERA over his last four starts.
Cashner took a perfect game into the seventh inning before giving up a leadoff single to Jose Tabata.
"I've had some no-hitters broken up before. I think in previous times I've learned to just stay with my game plan and keep making pitches," said Cashner, who faced the minimum 27 hitters thanks to Andrew McCutchen's inning-ending double-play in the seventh.
The 27-year-old is 10-8 with a 3.21 ERA this season and has pitched well versus the Dodgers in that time, logging a 1.83 ERA in five meetings (2 starts) without a decision.
Solid pitching also highlighted Saturday's 4-0 Dodgers win. Clayton Kershaw scattered three hits and two walks while striking out 10 over seven innings to win his 15th game of the year.
"A little bit erratic at first with the fastball but A.J. (Ellis) did a real good job of making me use all my pitches on both sides of the plate," Kershaw said of his catcher.
The NL West-champion Dodgers bounced back from Friday's 2-0 setback, getting two-run homers from Ellis and Yasiel Puig.
Burch Smith was tagged with the loss after giving up two runs on three hits and five walks with six strikeouts over six innings for the Padres, who had won five of six coming in.
"I'm doing some good things, taking some steps in the right direction," Smith said.
The Dodgers have won six of their last seven versus the Padres and lead the season series 10-8.