Starting with the starters …

We’ve talked (a lot) about the Padres revamped offense, and rightfully so. Through the first 10 games, the offense is notably better than a year ago and we’ve already seen the contributions of Matt Kemp and Justin Upton in the middle of the lineup so far.

But how about that starting pitching?

After Wednesday’s victory over the D-backs, Padres starting pitchers have a 2.44 ERA in their first 59 1/3 innings this year, which is the best mark in the National League and the third-best in baseball, trailing the Tigers and A’s.

The team will begin its third turn through the rotation on Friday when the Padres open a three-game series at Wrigley Field against the Cubs, but so far the early returns from the starters have been very good.

And consider that Ian Kennedy, the team’s No. 4 starter is on the disabled list. Odrisamer Despaigne has filled in well and has allowed one run in 11 2/3 innings.

Maybe the surprise of the bunch is Brandon Morrow, who has worked seven innings in each of his first two starts — doing so for the first time since September 27-October 3, 2012. You’d be hard-pressed to too many better No. 5 starters — in a small sample-size, of course — than Morrow.

— Corey Brock

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