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Padres look for help in second half

Padres look for help in second half

SAN FRANCISCO -- The first half for the Padres will be defined by any number of things -- injuries, inconsistency and a few streaks of note that no one can really explain.

The Padres finished the first half with a 10-4 victory over the Giants on Sunday at AT&T Park, lifting their record to 36-52.

The Padres had lost nine of their last 10 games before that victory, just one of several weird streaks they had in the first half.

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Remember, this is a team that started the season 9-3, then later lost 17 of 21 games before winning 10 consecutive games.

"That has a lot to do with a young team, young in [Major League] service time," Padres manager Bud Black said. "It is a Major League inexperienced group."

Black was talking about the number of young players, like outfielder/infielder Kyle Blanks, rookie shortstop Everth Cabrera, outfielder Will Venable and pitchers Josh Banks, Josh Geer and Tim Stauffer, all of whom started the year in the Minor Leagues.

The Padres have had to dip into their reserves when players like Brian Giles, David Eckstein and Nick Hundley and pitchers Jake Peavy and Chris Young landed on the disabled list.

"When you lose those guys like we did in the last few weeks, it takes a toll," Black said.

Black's hope is that the Padres will get several of those players back after the All-Star break to help out a team that has struggled recently on offense -- ranking last in the Major Leagues in runs and average -- and on the pitching side.

"At some point in the next week to 10 days, you're going to see a few new faces, guys coming off the disabled list or guys up from our system," Black said.

One of those faces could be top prospect right-handed pitcher Mat Latos, who is currently with Double-A San Antonio. The Padres also hope to activate Eckstein (strained hamstring) from the disabled list in a week as well.

Thursday will also see the debut of Padres.TV, which allows Cox High Speed Internet customers to subscribe to in-market online broadcasts of live Padres games.

Pitching matchup
SD: Chad Gaudin (4-7, 5.03)
Gaudin is coming off a strong outing on July 8 in Arizona when he limited the D-backs to one run on three hits with four walks and seven strikeouts. He left with a 2-1 lead and received a no-decision in a game the Padres eventually lost when their bullpen let them down in the late innings. "Anytime you lose a ballgame you had a chance to win, whether it's because of a mental mistake or a physical mistake, it's frustrating," Gaudin said. "But you try to take the positives from it and go out tomorrow, not make those same mistakes and execute when you can." Gaudin actually had a pretty good first half despite his 5.03 ERA. He's been hurt by command issues, but when he's in the strike zone, he's been good.

COL: RHP Aaron Cook (8-3, 3.98 ERA)
Cook comes out of the All-Star break looking to get back on track after two average July starts. Against the Braves in his last start, Cook gave up five runs on nine hits in 5 2/3 innings without his best sinker. In the start before, he yielded three runs (two earned) in five innings before leaving with his wind knocked out. He has a 5.91 ERA in July after posting a 5-1 record with a 2.36 ERA in June.

Tidbits
Pitcher Cha Seung Baek will resume his Minor League rehab stint Monday with Double-A San Antonio. Baek threw two innings five days ago with Triple-A Portland and will throw between 50 and 60 pitches Monday before rejoining Portland. He is pitching for San Antonio because Portland is off Monday. ... The Padres' game Sunday was their 20th consecutive game without a day off. The team will be off for three days during the All-Star break before starting a four-game series Thursday against Colorado. ... Former Padres infielder Callix Crabbe, now with Triple-A Tacoma (Seattle), hit two home runs against the Portland Beavers on Saturday.

Tickets
 Buy tickets now to catch the game in person.

On the Internet
 MLB.TV
 Gameday Audio
•  Gameday
•  Official game notes

On television
• 4 San Diego

On radio
• XPRS 1090, XEMO 860 (Español)

Up next
• Friday: Padres (Josh Geer, 1-4, 5.79) vs. Rockies (Ubaldo Jimenez, 6-9, 3.81), 7:05 p.m. PT
• Saturday: Padres (Kevin Correia, 5-7, 4.48) vs. Rockies (Jason Hammel, 5-4, 4.43), 7:05 p.m. PT
• Sunday: Padres (Tim Stauffer, 0-1, 2.57) vs. Rockies (Jason Marquis, 11-6, 3.65), 1:05 p.m. PT

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

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