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Preview: Dodgers at Padres

GAME: Los Angeles Dodgers (75-57) at San Diego Padres (64-69)
DATE/TIME: Thursday, September 03 – 10:10 PM EST
WHERE: Petco Park, San Diego, California
LINE: -146, 135 TOTAL: 7

The Los Angeles Dodgers are soaring toward the National League West title and look to pad their lead on Thursday, when they open a four-game series against the host San Diego Padres. Los Angeles swept three games from San Francisco and has won eight of its last nine while opening up a 6 1/2-game lead over the second-place Giants.

Los Angeles’ Adrian Gonzalez has tormented his former club by batting .391 with six homers and 14 RBIs this season. Gonzalez has 25 blasts in 2015, but all four of his 30-homer campaigns came from 2007-10 when he played for San Diego. The Padres have lost seven of their last 10 contests and got an 11-game homestand off to a rocky start by losing two of three to Texas, including Wednesday’s 4-3, 10-inning loss. San Diego’s Justin Upton is 10-for-20 with two homers against scheduled Los Angeles starter Mat Latos while Matt Kemp is just 3-for-22.

TV: 10:10 p.m. ET, SportsNet LA (Los Angeles), FSN San Diego

PITCHING MATCHUP: Dodgers RH Mat Latos (4-9, 4.76 ERA) vs. Padres RH Colin Rea (2-2, 5.95)

Latos is 0-2 with a 6.05 ERA in four starts since being acquired from Miami. He has worked fewer than five innings in each of his last three outings and went 16 days between appearances before a 4 2/3-inning no-decision (two runs, four hits) against the Chicago Cubs on Saturday. Latos is 0-2 with a 2.08 ERA in four career starts against the Padres – his first major-league club – and gave up three runs and six hits over six frames in a loss on July 26 in his final start for the Marlins.

Rea has lost his last two outings after winning his first two major-league starts. He fell to Philadelphia in his last turn, when he gave up four runs and six hits in five frames. Rea has pitched fewer than six innings in each of his turns and has struck out four in every start.

WALK-OFFS

1. San Diego C Derek Norris (shoulder, elbow) and 1B Yonder Alonso (back) are both doubtful for the opener after missing Wednesday’s game.

2. Los Angeles C Yasmani Grandal is 1-for-34 over his last 12 contests.

3. Kemp is batting .333 in 45 at-bats against the Dodgers – his former club – but hasn’t hit a homer.

PREDICTION: Dodgers 4, Padres 2