Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 7/31/13
Speculation circulated around Petco Park on Tuesday the eve of the trade deadline. Chase Headley was out of the starting lineup. Carlos Quentin was replaced in left field after the fifth inning. All the while more than a few judges of talent professional and amateur surveyed a pitching matchup that doubled as a convenient referendum. Edinson Volquez and Cincinnati starter Mat Latos threw from the same mound for the second time since they were traded for each other in late 2011. A little more than a year ago Volquez and the Padres prevailed in a 2-1 victory at Petco Park though Latos arguably out-pitched his counterpart as the former Padre logged seven shutout innings. Tuesday's rematch began as another pitching duel before fading into a draw ultimately overshadowed by Nick Hundley's tie-breaking two-run double in the bottom of the eighth. That proved the game-winner in a 4-2 triumph as the Padres ran their winning streak to four games. "We're playing fundamentally sound baseball" said Hundley who snapped an 0-for-12 spell with his double. "Starting pitching has been outstanding. It has to be when you're winning 2-1 1-0 4-2." Though victors in seven of their last nine the Padres remain firmly entrenched in fourth place in the National League West 8 1/2 games behind the ever-ascendant Dodgers. San Diego's place in the standings would seem to suggest a move to "sell" if any move were to be made before Wednesday's 1 p.m. cutoff for non-waiver trades. There was little speculation though on Hundley's decisive hit. With two on and two outs the catcher was all over Sam LeCure's hanging knuckle-curve pulling the 1-and-0 offering down the left-field line to score Will Venable and Jedd Gyorko. "I faced him in the past" Hundley said of LeCure. "He has real good life on his pitches. Basically I was looking for something up in the zone I could drive." Huston Street closed out the ninth inning for his 20th save. Venable was 3-for-3 with two doubles off Latos. The Reds right-hander was done after six innings having allowed a pair of runs on six hits and two walks. He threw 65 strikes among his 104 pitches. Volquez also went six innings his own two-run outing cut short by a familiar bugaboo -- walks. He issued five of them while yielding four hits. Eerily he was nearly Latos' mirror image in one respect throwing 65 strikes over 105 pitches. "Everything was working tonight" Volquez said. "I have a pretty good idea facing these guys. I was with them for four years. "Both pitchers were good. I left the game tied and that's OK against a good team like Cincinnati."
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