Outfielder Baxter joins Padres from Triple-A
Lefty Garrison designated to open spot on 40-man roster
SAN DIEGO -- Outfielder Mike Baxter, who hit .301 with 58 extra-base hits with Triple-A Portland this season, joined the Padres before Monday's game against the Dodgers at PETCO Park.
The Padres had to purchase Baxter's contract to add him to their 40-man roster. To make room for Baxter on their 40-man roster, San Diego designated left-handed pitcher Steve Garrison for assignment.
Baxter, 25, can also play first base and will give the Padres another left-handed bat off the bench.
"He's been pretty consistent all year," Padres manager Bud Black said. "He's got an all-around game. He hits with some power and steals some bases."
Baxter, the Padres' fourth-round Draft pick in 2005 out of Vanderbilt, hit a career-high 18 home runs this season with 72 RBIs in 136 games for Portland. He had 30 doubles, 10 triples and 22 stolen bases.
Baxter credits a mechanical fix by manager Terry Kennedy for getting him back on track around the All-Star break. Baxter hit .358 in the second half of the season.
"There was a point where I wasn't hitting really well and TK [Kennedy] pulled me aside and helped fix where I finish, shortening my swing," Baxter said.
Because Baxter wasn't on the 40-man roster and the team -- up until this 10-game losing streak -- had been playing well, he never figured to get a promotion, even after the rosters expanded on Sept. 1.
"I wasn't thinking of where I ranked in the organization or anything, but they had been so successful, you've got to understand that they didn't need to add," Baxter said.
Latos scratched by Padres with stomach flu
SAN DIEGO -- Pitcher Mat Latos, who was set to start Monday's game against the Los Angeles Dodgers, was scratched after what he called a "violent" bout with the stomach flu on Sunday.
Tim Stauffer got his second spot start of the season in place of Latos.
Latos said Monday afternoon that he was feeling "one-thousand times better than I was yesterday." Latos started feeling sick during Sunday's 4-2 loss to the Rockies and it got progressively worse after the game and into the evening.
"I just hit a wall," Latos said. "I had been holding it in all game, but my stomach was hurting so bad I had a sharp pain in my stomach. I had to let it out. But now, I don't feel weak at all."
As it turns out, Latos will only miss one day, as manager Bud Black indicated that the right-hander will get the start Tuesday against the Dodgers at PETCO Park.
Kevin Correia, who was supposed to start on Tuesday, will be available to pitch in relief. Rookie Cory Luebke will pitch in Wednesday's series finale against the Dodgers.
Latos, who is 13-5 with a 2.25 ERA, has allowed two or fewer earned runs in each of his last 14 starts.
"It sucks, I'm not going to lie, especially with what's going on [10-game losing streak]," Latos said. "I don't want to miss a start. I want to be that reliable guy."
Latos, 22, even went as far to march into Black's office on Monday, wearing a smile and armed with a convincing argument -- well, from his perspective -- of why he should still pitch on Monday.
It didn't work.
"We think he's turned the corner but last night was a difficult night for him," Black said. "We think by tomorrow he'll be ready to go."
Stauffer is no stranger to spot starts. He made one on May 9 in Houston when he threw five scoreless innings when Correia missed a start. Stauffer also defeated these Dodgers on Aug. 21, 2006, in an important game in the pennant drive, allowing one run over six innings.
Padres' Young encouraged by rehab stint
SAN DIEGO -- Padres starting pitcher Chris Young, on the disabled list since early April with a strained right shoulder, continues to be optimistic that he will return to the mound for the Padres this season after his second Minor League rehab start in a week.
Young tossed 63 pitches in 3 1/3 innings for Triple-A Portland on Sunday, allowing no hits and two walks with three strikeouts.
Young said that he did not feel any discomfort in his shoulder during the outing and has welcomed the chance to face batters in a game situation for the first time since a previous rehab start in May.
"It's just concentrating on making pitches and getting hitters out versus how my shoulder feels," Young said. "It's just the competitive element that you can't simulate.
"It's still an evolution for me -- trying to bring some stuff along, work on command, work on some of my offspeed pitches. It's still a work in progress. I can't expect to be 100 percent in midseason form right now, but I feel like I'm getting there."
Because the Minor League seasons are wrapping up, Padres manager Bud Black said Young will likely throw a simulated game later this week, but that there is still no timetable on when he could pitch in a big league contest in 2010.
Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. Gina Mizell is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.