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Preview: Rockies at Padres

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

It cannot get much worse for the Colorado Rockies, who will likely begin a three-game series in San Diego against the Padres on Monday without both their All-Star Game starters. Left fielder Carlos Gonzalez on Sunday sprained the middle finger on his right hand while swinging at a pitch in the ninth inning of the Rockies' 6-1 loss at Arizona, which capped a three-game weekend sweep in which they were outscored 22-2. Shortstop Troy Tulowitzki is already sidelined after breaking a rib while diving for a ground ball on June 13.

San Diego has plummeted to 7 1/2 games behind first-place Arizona in the National League West after losing nine straight and 13 of its last 15 since reaching its high-water mark of 38-36 - and 2 1/2 out - on June 21. Edinson Volquez, who is 0-2 with a 14.66 ERA in three starts against Colorado this season, gets the ball for the Padres and will oppose Tyler Chatwood, who is enjoying a breakthrough season but coming off his worst start. The Rockies have fallen 5 1/2 games behind the Diamondbacks.

TV: 10:10 p.m. ET, ROOT Sports (Colorado), Fox Sports San Diego

PITCHING MATCHUP: Rockies RH Tyler Chatwood (4-2, 2.75 ERA) vs. Padres RH Edinson Volquez (6-6, 5.26)

Chatwood allowed season highs of runs (six) and hits (11) in five innings of a 10-8 loss at Dodger Stadium on Wednesday and has one win in his last six starts despite a 3.38 ERA during that span. The 23-year-old Fontana, Calif., native, who has become more successful with a much-improved slider, has averaged less than six innings per start this season. Chatwood has an 11.12 ERA in three games (one start) against San Diego - all last season.

Volquez was sharp on his 30th birthday when he allowed one run and seven hits in six innings at Boston on Tuesday, and didn't take the loss in San Diego's 2-1 setback. The Dominican Republic native has recorded two consecutive quality starts after yielding two runs and seven hits in six innings in a 9-2 victory at Miami on June 28 - the last time the Padres won. Volquez could catch a break if Gonzalez is out of the lineup - he is 10-for-19 against him.

WALK-OFFS

1. The Rockies are 8-2 against the Padres this season. They split a four-game series in Colorado in their last encounter in June.

2. Tulowitzki and CF Dexter Fowler (hand) will begin rehab assignments at Triple-A Colorado Springs on Monday and are targeting a return to the lineup Thursday when the Rockies begin a four-game series at Dodger Stadium.

3. San Diego C Yasmani Grandal on Sunday was placed on the 60-day disabled list with a right knee injury. The Padres called up C Rene Rivera, who hasn't appeared in the major leagues since 2011, from Triple-A Tucson.

PREDICTION: Rockies 3, Padres 2

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/thomson-reuters/130708/preview-rockies-at-padres