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Padres go for third series sweep Sunday

Club is 16-14 over last 30 games
San Diego Padres

Bill Center, longtime sportswriter for U-T San Diego, is an employee of the Padres.

The Padres haven't totally turned the corner. They are not yet challengers in the National League West.

Bill Center, longtime sportswriter for U-T San Diego, is an employee of the Padres.

The Padres haven't totally turned the corner. They are not yet challengers in the National League West.

But they are playing better.

Sunday afternoon against the Detroit Tigers at Petco Park (1:40 p.m. PT) presents the Padres with the opportunity for a fourth straight win and a third series sweep over the past month -- and a second straight series sweep at Petco Park.

The Padres, who opened the season at 15-30, are 16-14 since.

More recently, they are 7-4 over the last 11 games.

San Diego's first sweep of the season came against the Chicago Cubs at Petco on May 29-31. The second sweep was also at home against the Cincinnati Reds (June 12-14).

Saturday night's 7-3 win over the Tigers pushed the Padres' home record this season over .500, at 19-18. The Padres have won five straight home games and are 10-4 over their last 14 games at Petco.

The two wins against the Tigers on Friday and Saturday assure the Padres of their first Interleague series win since July 1-3, 2016, when they took two of three games from the New York Yankees.

Noteworthy

• Catcher/first baseman Hector Sanchez is 3-for-15 (.200) as a pinch-hitter this season -- with a pair of two-run homers, the latest putting the Padres ahead on Saturday, just one day after he returned from the disabled list. Since the veteran switch-hitter went on the DL on May 7, the Padres have lacked a power hitter on the bench and a pinch-hitter from the left side. Sanchez originally went on the DL with a left foot contusion, but then suffered a quad strain while rehabbing. Both pinch-hit homers have helped the Padres tie or take the lead.

• The Padres are 4-2 in the six starts made by right-handed rookie Dinelson Lamet (2-2), who had his second straight quality start. Lamet pitched into the seventh inning for the first time on Saturday, allowing three runs (two earned) on three hits and a walk with five strikeouts in six-plus innings. He lowered his earned run average from 7.50 to 6.60. Lamet has allowed 26 hits and 10 walks in 30 innings with 42 strikeouts.

• Third baseman Cory Spangenberg was 2-for-4 with two RBIs on Saturday. It was his 12th multi-hit game of the season -- and six of those have come in his last 13 games. He is 17-for-49 (.347) during the 13-game run -- with a double, three homers and six RBIs, while raising his average from .240 to .271.

• Remember when everyone panicked after Austin Hedges opened the season by going hitless in his first 24 at-bats? The Padres currently have two rookie outfielders with extended 0-fers. Right fielder Hunter Renfroe is hitless in 11 straight at-bats with five strikeouts, while center fielder Franchy Cordero -- who recorded eight putouts on Saturday -- is now hitless in his last 23 at-bats with 14 strikeouts.

San Diego Padres