Padres facing Brewers with short 'pen

Padres facing Brewers with short 'pen

LOS ANGELES -- Four games at Miller Park against the Milwaukee Brewers figure to test the San Diego Padres pitching staff, starters and relievers, to no end.

The Brewers, who have hit the fourth most home runs in the Major Leagues, will present a challenge to a staff that could be down one long reliever for a few days.

No, not a great place to be heading, especially since the Padres have dropped their last nine road games.

San Diego manager Bud Black said on Wednesday that reliever Chad Reineke, acquired in the deal with Houston for Randy Wolf, is feeling some discomfort in his right shoulder.

"He's getting extra work in the training room," Black said. "He might be down for the Milwaukee series."

Of course, the Padres aren't exactly strapped for pitchers, as they're carrying 15 on the roster now that the overall roster was allowed to expand from 25 to 40 players on Sept. 1.

Rookie Dirk Hayhurst and Brian Falkenborg figure to handle the long-relief role with Reineke out.

Pitching matchup
SD: LHP Shawn Estes (1-1, 3.33 ERA)
Estes, out since May 29 with a fractured left thumb, was activated from the disabled list on Monday. The 35-year-old will be a free agent after the season, and the Padres want to get a look at him as they move forward with an eye on 2009. Estes is 1-1 with a 3.33 ERA in five games this season, including four starts.

MIL: RHP Jeff Suppan (10-7, 4.49 ERA)
Suppan capped off a stellar August with a seven-inning, two-run performance against the Pirates. The right-hander finished the month 5-0 and struck out twice as many batters as he walked. Suppan said he used the movement on his fastball to his advantage and mixed in a changeup to keep hitters off balance. He'll need to do the same against the Padres, against whom he is 5-3 with a 5.66 ERA in his career.

Estes flew out of Los Angeles before Wednesday's game at Dodger Stadium so that he didn't have to take the red-eye charter from Los Angeles to Milwaukee late Wednesday night. The Padres weren't due to get into Milwaukee until around 5 a.m. ... The Padres will see CC Sabathia and Ben Sheets during the series. ... Portland manager Randy Ready, who on Tuesday joined the Padres staff after the Beavers completed their season, was named the Pacific Coast League's North Division "Best Manager Prospect." ... On Wednesday, pitcher Wade LeBlanc became the 13th Padres player to make his Major League debut this season. The club record of 16 was set in 2002.

 Buy tickets now to catch the game in person.

On the Internet
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television
• 4SD/704-HD

On radio
• XPRS 1090/105.7 FM , XEMO 860 (Español)

Up next
• Friday: Padres (Josh Geer, 1-0, 3.60) at Brewers (CC Sabathia, 15-8, 2.82), 5:05 p.m. PT
• Saturday: Padres (Jake Peavy, 9-9, 2.69) at Brewers (Ben Sheets, 12-7, 2.97), 4:05 p.m. PT
• Sunday: Padres (Chris Young, 4-5, 4.91) at Brewers (TBD), 11:05 a.m. PT

Corey Brock is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.