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Black: Facing D-backs will be 'unique' for Kennedy

Black: Facing D-backs will be 'unique' for Kennedy

Black: Facing D-backs will be 'unique' for Kennedy

PHOENIX -- Pitcher Ian Kennedy doesn't talk with the media the day before he starts, but his manager, Bud Black, had plenty of good things to say about the right-hander on Monday.

Kennedy, who will face his former team, the D-backs, on Tuesday, is 2-1 with a 3.20 ERA in four starts since he was traded to the Padres on July 31 for left-handed reliever Joe Thatcher and Minor League reliever Matt Stites.

Kennedy has allowed two or fewer runs in three of his first four starts with the Padres, and he tossed seven scoreless innings in a victory over the Pirates last week at Petco Park.

Black understands that there will be an emotional component Tuesday when Kennedy faces some of his former teammates, many of them good friends from relationships forged over a four-year period.

"It's going to be emotional for him," Black said. "It's a different feel. I've been there. I think that it's a unique feeling."

Black, who saw a lot of Kennedy from the other side, likes what he's seen in a small sample-size from Kennedy, who is two years removed from winning 21 games with the D-backs.

"We're seeing the pitcher we thought we'd get," Black said.

Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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