Tonight's Matchup: Brewers (Estrada) @ Padres (Volquez)

Denis Poroy

After tonight, the Brewers don't play another 9:10 start until...oh, Friday.

These late nights are really starting to take a toll on my daytime hours.

I hope you'll stay up late with us again tonight, though, to watch the Brewers take on Edinson Volquez (8.84/4.76 ERA/FIP in 2013, 4.14/4.06 in 2012) and the Padres. Volquez evened out a rough start to his season a bit with a quality start against the Giants on Friday, allowing two runs on eight hits over six innings. He walked three and struck out three in that game.

Volquez has always been a relatively high strikeout guy (about one per inning for his career), but he's striking out less than six batters per nine in 2013. His control issues haven't changed, though: He led all of baseball with 105 walks issued a year ago and has given out ten free passes in 18.1 innings this season.

Volquez had one great start (seven shutout innings) and one disaster (six runs in five innings) in his pair of appearances against the Brewers last season. Four Brewers have faced him ten times or more:

Player PA AVG OBP SLG OPS
Ryan Braun 30 .360 .467 .520 .987
Rickie Weeks 18 .429 .556 .929 1.484
Yuniesky Betancourt 11 .300 .364 .600 .964
Jonathan Lucroy 11 .100 .182 .100 .282

He'll face Marco Estrada (4.50/4.81 ERA/FIP in 2013, 3.64/3.35 in 2012), who has been one of the Brewers' most consistent pitchers in 2013. Estrada beat the Cubs on Friday, allowing three runs on seven hits over six innings. He's pitched a quality start in each of his last three outings.

Here's a weird statistical quirk: On April 8 Estrada allowed two runs over seven innings to lower his ERA to 4.50. On April 14 he allowed three runs over six innings, so his ERA remained exactly the same. Last time out he did the same thing. There's absolutely nothing relevant or interesting about that and you're probably worse off for having read this paragraph.

Estrada did not face the Padres in 2012, and no current Padres have faced him more than three times.

As of this writing today's lineup was not yet posted. If you've seen it, please drop it in the comments along with a note about the lackluster nature of this game preview.

And in the bullpen:

The weather in San Diego is nice. It's always nice. That's kind of sickening.
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