It seems like everyone is making a big deal about Kevin Correia's return to San Diego on Wednesday.
Everyone except for the man taking the mound, that is.
"It's just another start. I mean, it's fun to come back here and pitch, but I've pitched a lot here in my career, every year multiple times," Correia said. "It is always nice to come home, but it's not a huge deal, really."
Try telling that to the fans at PETCO Park, however, and you'll likely be hearing a different tune. Correia, who hails from San Diego, won over the Padres faithful in his two seasons pitching for the team, when he went 22-21 with a 4.54 ERA and 257 strikeouts.
His best year came in 2009, when he led the Padres in nearly every pitching category, going 12-11 with a 3.91 ERA and 142 strikeouts in 33 starts.
Even Padres manager Bud Black said it would be special to have his former starter back on the mound at PETCO.
"Kevin is a guy I'll follow throughout the year. I enjoyed Kevin here as a member of our organization. This is home [for him], and I know he enjoyed playing here," Black said.
Homecomings aside, Correia brings a 4-2 record into his former backyard and is coming off a tremendous outing against the Rockies at Coors Field, where he went 6 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing just three hits while striking out four.
"Kevin pitched a magnificent game," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "He's pitched a couple games in less-than-ideal conditions and he's gone out there and just dealt with it."
The Padres will send hard-luck left-hander Clayton Richard to the mound for his seventh start of the season. The 27-year-old is coming off two solid outings where he held the heavy hitting Phillies and Dodgers to just two runs apiece. He took the loss in both games, however, as the Padres' hitters could muster just two runs against the Dodgers and were shut out by the Phillies.
The run shortage is not exclusive to Richard, however, as the Padres have scored a National League-low 93 runs in 2011 and have been shut out seven times in 30 games this season.
"There's no doubt we're struggling to score runs," Black said. "The guys know what's going on. They are doing everything they can. I can't put it any clearer. I do know we're going to come out of it."
Pirates: Injuries catching up with young Pirates
The Pirates could be playing with a short bench Wednesday after third baseman Pedro Alvarez left Tuesday night's game in the seventh inning with tightness in his right quad. The 24-year-old had been showing signs of breaking out of his early-season slump with three hits and two walks in his past three games.
The Pirates are already without outfielder Jose Tabata, who has missed the past three games with a sore right hamstring. The 22-year-old took part in drills Tuesday afternoon but could be held out of the lineup until Friday.
"I feel better," Tabata said before Tuesday's game. "I'm practicing every day and took batting practice outside. I think I'll be ready at home in two more days."
Padres: Hudson day to day with hamstring injury
Second baseman Orlando Hudson is day to day after leaving Tuesday's game in the first inning after straining his right hamstring. The 33-year-old suffered the injury on his way to second base after smacking a double to center field.
The veteran infielder has started 27 of the Padres' 30 games in 2011, hitting .245 with four doubles and six RBIs. Hudson has also been a pleasant surprise for the Padres on the basepaths with 10 stolen bases, which ties his career high.
"I think that Orlando has great instincts on the bases," Padres first-base coach Dave Roberts said. "I don't consider him a burner, but when he gets an opportunity to steal, he's going to take advantage of it."
Padres starting pitcher Mat Latos hit a solo home run Tuesday night -- it was the second of his career and the first run the Padres had scored in support of Latos in his past three starts ... Pirates closer Joel Hanrahan is nine-for-nine in save opportunities this year ... The Padres are tied for the Major League-lead in stolen bases (35) with Kansas City ... The Pirates have won 10 games on the road this season -- it took the Bucs until June 28 to win their 10th road game in 2010.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.