The Rays will look to climb back to .500 on the season for the first time since the sixth game of the season. The Rays will send Jeremy Hellickson (1-2, 4.79 ERA) to the mound looking to rebound from rare back to back poor showings against the Kansas City Royals and Toronto Blue Jays.
The San Diego Padres will send Burch Smith (14th round 2011 draft) making his major league debut after being recalled from their Double A affiliate San Antonio Missions where he made just 6 starts with a record of 1-2 with a 1.15 ERA striking out 37 and walking only 6 in 31 1/3 innings of work.
For the second game in a row the Rays will start Sam Fuld in center field and Matt Joyce in the leadoff spot as Desmond Jennings takes an extra day to rest a sore groin which he tweaked diving back into first base on Friday night.
Bud Black‘s Padres lineup will include five left handed bats and two switch hitters in hopes of capitalizing on one of Hellickson’s more pronounced 2013 weaknesses. Left handed batters have posted a slash line (batting average/on-base percentage/slugging percentage) of .305/.359/.622 and all 7 home runs against him this year have been off left handed bats.