WASHINGTON -- While much talk has been devoted to whether Nationals rookie right-hander Stephen Strasburg should have made the All-Star Game, the Padres have a young arm worthy of consideration, too.

Right-hander Mat Latos, 22, boasts a 9-4 record this season with a 2.62 ERA and 91 strikeouts. In his most recent start -- a 3-0 win against Houston on Friday -- he did not allow a run on four hits in eight innings.

But while Latos has been one of the top pitchers in the Major Leagues, Padres manager Bud Black said he has considered moving him to the back of the rotation due to inning limits.

"More than likely, he will be moved back a number of days after the break to try to maximize his starts as we move into August and September," Black said. "We've talked about the innings, we've talked about the starts. We're conscious of that, because of where he's been -- last year at 120 innings, the year before that 55.

"We got to watch it, just based on recent history of some pitchers who have followed his timeline."

Latos has pitched 99 2/3 innings this season. Black said Latos' final season limit would be in the range of 150 to 185 total innings.

Venable likely to need rehab stint in Minors

WASHINGTON -- Padres outfielder Will Venable, who is on the 15-day disabled list with lower back stiffness, is doing better, but will probably head to the Minors for a rehab stint before coming to San Diego, manager Bud Black said.

"More than likely, we will have to do that with Will," Black said. "At least to get him reacclimated to game conditions and see live pitching."

Venable will be eligible to return after the All-Star break on July 17.

He had his best month of the season in June. During that span, Venable hit .259 with 14 hits, four homers and 13 RBIs. For the season, he is batting .238 with 38 RBIs.

"He's been playing so well," Black said. "He was swinging the bat -- he hit some big home runs on that Florida trip -- so that was tough to see [him get hurt]."

Eckstein gets some rest on strain in right calf

WASHINGTON -- David Eckstein was not in the starting lineup for the Padres' 6-5 loss against the Nationals on Tuesday night.

He has a muscle strain in the lower part of his right calf, but San Diego manager Bud Black does not believe it to be a serious injury.

"Eck has a little thing with his calf that we are keeping an eye on," Black said. "We think this can resolve itself in a few days. It's bothered him for a few days, but we just wanted to give him rest."

Eckstein, however, came in to pinch-hit with two outs in the eighth inning for Edward Mujica. He popped out to the shortstop to end the three-run inning and remained in the game at second base.

"With Ecks, I know that he can play within limits," Black said. "We are going to try to stay away from it the best we can, but I thought that was a scenario where we needed him out there."