Petco Park. Photo by Chris Stone
Petco Park. Photo by Chris Stone

The first postseason game at Petco Park with fans since 2006 will be played Friday with the San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers tied at one game apiece in a National League Division Series.

“I expect it to be pretty insane, which I’m really excited about,” Blake Snell, the Padres’ scheduled starting pitcher Friday. “I know when we beat New York, I saw the fans were going crazy, so I’m really excited to see what they’ve got, see what they bring, and hopefully we get a couple wins and can see them go even crazier.”

Snell said everyone he knows in the San Diego has asked him for a ticket, “so I stop replying. Sorry.”

Said Padres manager Bob Melvin: “I can’t say enough about the fan base and what they’ve done this year. I don’t know how they can surpass as far as enthusiasm what they’ve done during the season, but I wouldn’t put it past them.”

The Padres’ only postseason games at Petco Park since 2006 before Friday were three wild-card series games against the St. Louis Cardinals in 2020 that fans were not permitted to attend in an attempt to limit the spread of the coronavirus.

Snell is 2-1 with a 1.27 ERA in his five starts since Sept. 16, including allowing two runs and four hits in 3 1/3 innings in the Padres’ 7-3 loss to the New York Mets in Game 2 of a wild-card series Saturday.

Snell was 8-10 with a 3.38 ERA in the regular season, including an 0-1 record with a 6.00 ERA in two starts against the Dodgers.

“I really like facing these guys because I know how good they are,” said Snell, who is 1-1 with a 2.86 ERA in eight starts lifetime against Los Angeles.

Right-hander Tony Gonsolin is set to start for the Dodgers in what would be his second major league appearance since Aug. 24. The 2022 All-Star Game selection was on the injured list from Aug. 26 through Oct. 3 because of a right forearm strain.

Gonsolin pitched two shutout innings in a rehabilitation start for the Oklahoma City Dodgers, Los Angeles’ Triple-A affiliate, Sept. 27 and allowed one run and three hits in a two-inning start against the Colorado Rockies Oct. 3.

“Certainly there’s going to be some restrictions on Tony,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said in a Zoom call Thursday. “I don’t know what they are right now. I know that he’s built up, upwards to 75 pitches. We’ll see how it goes with his stuff and effectiveness.”

Gonsolin was 16-1 during the regular season for a major league-best .947 winning percentage with a 2.14 ERA. He was 2-0 with a 0.71 ERA against the Padres, with 14 strikeouts and one walk. Both appearances against the Padres came at Dodger Stadium.

Gonsolin is 4-0 lifetime against the Padres with a 1.45 ERA.

The Padres were 9-15 in Snell’s 24 regular-season starts. The lefthander did not make a major league appearance until May 18 because of a left abductor strain. The Dodgers were 19-5 in Gonsolin’s 24 regular-season starts.

The game is set to begin at 5:37 p.m. and will be televised by FS1.

The Padres tied the best-of-five series at one game a piece with a 5-3 victory Wednesday at Dodger Stadium with Manny Machado and Jake Cronenworth each hitting solo home runs and driving in two runs and three relievers shutting out the Dodgers over the final four innings.

–City News Service