Young hopes to limit basestealers

Young hopes to limit basestealers

LOS ANGELES -- Chris Young won't just be out to improve his pitching line from his last start when he takes the mound on Saturday to face the Los Angeles Dodgers at Dodger Stadium.

Young also will be out to prevent Dodgers baserunners from taking free bases while he's on the mound, something the Padres starting pitcher struggled with in his last start in Colorado.

Young was chased after three-plus innings in a 12-7 loss to the Rockies after allowing a career-high eight runs.

Worse still, the Rockies stole eight bases while the 6-foot-10 Young was in the game, including five from leadoff hitter Dexter Fowler alone.

Young got San Diego into trouble to begin with. Colorado's willingness to run, run again and run some more exposed a flaw.

In Young's career, baserunners have been successful stealing 91 percent of the time. In 2007, Young gave up 44 steals on 44 attempts. Part of the problem is Young's height, which lengthens his delivery and allows more time for baserunners to sprint 90 feet.

"It's obviously a goal to keep fast guys off base," Young said. "But it doesn't change the way I'm pitching."

The number of stolen bases the Rockies piled up while Young was in the game wasn't lost on Padres manager Bud Black.

"It's concerning," Black said. "We can't let that happen at the rate that it happened."

Going onto Friday's game, the Dodgers were tied for second in the National League with 15 stolen bases.

Pitching matchup
SD: RHP Chris Young (2-1, 5.74 ERA)
Young had the worst April of his career, though his first month can be cautiously viewed as "up and down." The ups were out of sight, a pair of seven-inning performances in which he gave up no earned runs. However, he bottomed out in his most recent start, giving up a career-high eight runs in three-plus innings at Coors Field. The Rockies took advantage of the 6-foot-10 right-hander's long delivery and recorded eight steals, five by Dexter Fowler alone. Young beat the Dodgers in his first start this year, tossing six innings of two-run ball on April 7. He owns a career 3.93 ERA vs. Los Angeles in 12 starts.

LAD: LHP Randy Wolf (1-1, 4.31 ERA)
Wolf finished with a no-decision against the Giants in his last start but deserved a better fate than to be charged for three runs in six innings. All of the runs were of the tough-luck variety, as two balls were misplayed in the windy outfield during a three-run first inning. Wolf didn't allow a runner past second base in the other five innings and he didn't walk a batter. He recorded a 4-2 loss against the Padres in the second game of the season.

Lost in Thursday's 8-5 loss to the Dodgers were three fine defensive plays by second baseman David Eckstein, who signed with the Padres during the offseason so that he could play his original position, even though he's spent most of his Major League career at shortstop. "I've known David since his first day in the big leagues. Nothing he does surprises me," Black said. ... The Padres' .421 slugging percentage for the month of April ranks third on their all-time list behind the 1995 and 2000 teams. ... Chad Gaudin, who made his Padres debut last week in Colorado, will pitch Sunday's game against the Dodgers. ... As per usual, Henry Blanco started at catcher on Friday with Jake Peavy on the mound. Blanco has started all six games that Peavy has started.

 Buy tickets now to catch the game in person.

On the Internet
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television
• 4 San Diego

On radio
• XPRS 1090, XEMO 860 (Español)

Up next
• Sunday: Padres (Chad Gaudin, 0-0, 0.00) at Dodgers (Chad Billingsley, 4-0, 2.14), 1:10 p.m. PT
• Monday: Padres (Kevin Correia, 0-2, 4.71) vs. Rockies (Jorge De La Rosa, 0-2, 3.57), 7:05 p.m. PT
• Tuesday: Padres (Josh Geer, 0-0, 5.29) vs. Rockies (Aaron Cook, 1-1, 7.11), 7:05 p.m. PT

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