LOS ANGELES -- First baseman Yonder Alonso didn't start Tuesday against the Dodgers, the fourth start in as many days that he has missed because of a right hand contusion.
Chances are there won't be a fifth.
Alonso hit in the cage and on the field before Tuesday's game at Dodger Stadium and said the strength in his right hand is better than it's been since he was hit by a pitch on Friday.
"It's getting better, much better," Alonso said before the game. "It's healing a lot faster than I thought it would. I think I'll be in there soon."
Alonso could be back in the lineup for the series finale Wednesday against the Dodgers. Jesus Guzman got the start at first base on Tuesday night.
"We're headed in that direction," said Padres manager Bud Black.
Alonso was hit on the hand by a pitch in the Padres' 17-inning victory over the Jays on Friday and has not had an at-bat since. Black did say Alonso was available to pinch-hit Tuesday.
The biggest issue that Alonso has faced since he was hit is having strength in the right hand to swing a bat. He tried unsuccessfully to do so Monday, but his hand felt strong enough to swing the bat prior to Tuesday's game.
Alonso liked how he felt and liked the results.
"It was the same old swing," he said. "I feel like I'm close to coming back."
Alonso is second on the team with a .284 average and is second in hits (54) and leads the Padres with 29 RBI's.
Quentin facing Dodgers for first time since ...
LOS ANGELES -- For those expecting to see some retaliation from the Dodgers against Padres outfielder Carlos Quentin on Tuesday, don't hold your breath.
That was the message Los Angeles manager Don Mattingly sent before the game.
"I don't really anticipate anything. He gets hit a lot. If he gets hit, he gets hit. I don't mean that in a bad way. But it's the way you've got to pitch him," Mattingly said. "I don't really want to stir it back up."
Quentin, who was back in the lineup on Tuesday after missing Monday's game, hadn't faced the Dodgers since April 11 when he was ejected for his part in a benches-clearing incident that occurred after Dodgers pitcher Zack Greinke hit him with a pitch. Quentin charged the mound and Greinke broke his left collarbone, necessitating surgery.
"We've got to try to pitch to him. And if we get somebody hit, I'm not going to look at it like, 'OK we're starting a war here.' They're going to try and get us out and pitching in is part of that. You pretty much know when guys are getting thrown at," Mattingly said.
"You know when somebody is throwing at somebody. It's not really that hard to figure out. So if that's going on, that's going on. I don't anticipate it. I anticipate us trying to get him out."
Quentin was in the lineup after missing Monday's series opener after coming up with a sore left shoulder after a catch Sunday at Petco Park when he collided against the padded wall in left field.
San Diego manager Bud Black echoed Mattingly's sentiments before the game.
"If anyone gets hit by a pitch on either team … that's baseball," Black said. "The game is always bigger than these isolated events."
Padres, Stauffer enjoying pitcher's versatility
LOS ANGELES -- Since being added to the roster from Triple-A Tucson on May 17, pitcher Tim Stauffer has given the Padres a little of everything -- which is just the way he and the team like it.
Stauffer entered Tuesday's game with a 3.95 ERA over his first 13 2/3 innings in seven games since his promotion back to the big leagues.
He pitched 5 2/3 innings of relief against the Cardinals on May 22, allowing one run. He's pitched two innings twice and has been used in short stints, as well.
The versatility and his length have given manager Bud Black an arm to lean and depend on, and it has been a lot like his role with the 90-win 2010 Padres when he posted a 2.97 ERA in 82 2/3 innings as a reliever and a starter.
"I'm kind of enjoying being in the bullpen a little more," he said. "I like knowing there's a chance I will be in the game each day. I've felt pretty good. The biggest thing is the recovery."
Stauffer was pitching every five days in the Tucson starting rotation, so the Padres weren't able to initially use him, for example, on consecutive days. But Stauffer said he's always had a resilient arm and that he has been better about bouncing back quicker since he joined the team.
"I like the resiliency. We've tried to keep an eye on it. He was starting in Tucson, throwing every fifth day," Black said.