Padres start Stults in opener against D'backs

Veteran southpaw Eric Stults can reach double digit wins for the first time in his seven-year big league career on Monday night when the San Diego Padres host the Arizona Diamondbacks in game one of a four-game set at Petco Park.

Stults, who reached the big leagues with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2006, won a career-high eight games with the Padres last season in 18 appearances after beginning the season with the Chicago White Sox.

He earned victory No. 9 in his most recent start in 2013, scattering seven hits and allowing two runs in five innings of a 5-2 win at Pittsburgh on Sept. 17.

The defeat of the Pirates ended a prolonged drought in which Stults, who began the season at 8-7, dropped six decisions and was without a victory in 10 starts from July 21-Sept. 11.

He last faced Arizona in the second outing in the slump and dropped a 10-0 decision after allowing seven runs on 11 hits in five innings.

He's opposed by 30-year-old righty Brandon McCarthy, who's won three of four decisions since starting with eight losses in his first 10 decisions of the year.

McCarthy got to 5-9 on the season on Sept. 18 against the Dodgers after scattering 10 hits and three runs over six innings in a 9-4 triumph.

He's beaten the Padres, the San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles in the mini- turnaround, while watching his ERA drop from 5.44 to 4.57.

In the Aug. 26 start against San Diego, McCarthy was a 6-1 winning after the Padres managed just an unearned run on five hits in seven innings.

On Sunday in Denver, Matt Davidson hit a three-run homer and had four RBI to lead the Diamondbacks to a 13-9 win over the Colorado Rockies.

Gerardo Parra, Chris Owings and Adam Eaton each drove in a pair of runs, while Paul Goldschmidt, Willie Bloomquist and A.J. Pollock added one RBI apiece for the Diamondbacks, who won the season series 12-7.

Will Harris (4-1) earned the win after getting the final two outs in the fifth. Starter Patrick Corbin allowed four runs on 10 hits over 4 1/3 innings.

In San Diego, four Dodgers' pitchers combined for a two-hit shutout as Los Angeles blanked the Padres, 1-0, to take the rubber match of a three-game set.

Andrew Cashner (10-9), who has been one of the hottest pitchers in baseball since the beginning of August, was terrific again albeit in defeat.

Cashner struck out seven over seven frames, yielding just a run on four hits. The 27- year old righty has surrendered two runs or less in six straight starts.

The Padres won nine of the first 15 games with Arizona this season, a year after winning the 2012 season series, 11-7.