In his two most recent outings, Odrisamer Despaigne hasn't looked like the pitcher that got his career off to a stellar start and came within four outs of recording the San Diego Padres' first no-hitter last month.
The right-hander will try to regain his dominant form Wednesday against a Minnesota Twins lineup that's off to a hot start in August.
Despaigne went 2-1 with a 1.31 ERA in his first five major league outings and capped that stretch by taking a no-hitter into the eighth inning July 20 in San Diego's 2-1 victory against the New York Mets.
He gave up five runs - two earned - while lasting just 3 2-3 innings in Atlanta six days later. Despaigne (2-3, 2.68 ERA) was then charged with six runs over 5 2-3 in a 6-2 loss to St. Louis on Thursday.
"With Odrisamer, we saw the same sort of package of stuff, but he just couldn't seem to wiggle out of some difficulties," manager Bud Black told MLB's official website. "They just sort of bunched some hits together against him.
"His stuff was the same as it's been all season. He just didn't get the results, and sometimes that happens."
Despaigne will next face a team that's batted .351 and scored 35 runs in its four games this month. The Twins (51-60) had just five hits in Tuesday's series opener after totaling 49 in the previous three contests, but did enough to earn their third consecutive victory and end San Diego's three-game win streak.
Minnesota got all of its scoring in the 3-1 victory from Kennys Vargas' first career home run in the sixth inning. The first baseman was making his home debut and is 6 for 18 with seven RBIs while recording a hit in each of his first four major league games.
"I think I'm going to be good (at Target Field)," Vargas said.
Vargas will next try to give Kevin Correia (5-13, 4.96) some much-needed help. The right-hander is tied for the major league lead in losses with Eric Stults of the Padres (51-61), and a 3.58 run-support average hasn't helped.
Correia gave up two runs - one earned - in six innings Thursday in Kansas City and did not receive a decision in a 6-3 loss. He had yielded a combined 11 runs and 18 hits in his previous two starts while pitching four innings in each.
"He had a few good innings, but he battled through it. He got himself in and out of a little trouble here and there," manager Ron Gardenhire said.
The Twins gave Correia four runs in his six innings in San Diego on May 20 and he earned a 5-3 victory against his former club, giving up three runs in six innings while striking out six. The San Diego native pitched for the Padres from 2009-10.
Will Venable is 5 for 12 against his former teammate and is 11 for 22 with two homers and seven RBIs in his last six contests.