The Arizona Diamondbacks kept themselves on the fringe of the playoff conversation after taking two of three from the NL West leaders.
They would be a much more serious contender if they could figure out a way to beat the San Diego Padres.
After being swept in the last two series, the Diamondbacks try to avoid losing seven straight games to the Padres for the first time in franchise history in Friday night's opener at Petco Park.
Following a 2-9 stretch that put a dent in their postseason chances, the Diamondbacks (68-70) bounced back with victories in their last two games in San Francisco. After an 11-inning win on Tuesday, Trevor Cahill took a no-hitter into the seventh in Wednesday's 6-2 victory to pull Arizona within 9 1/2 games of the Giants. It is also 6 1/2 back of the NL's second wild-card spot.
"I think we have some character and we have some grit," manager Kirk Gibson told the Diamondbacks' official website. "The frustrating thing is you could look back and we probably...