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04/11/07 7:07 PM ET

Kouzmanoff happy to be in San Diego

Third baseman says fans are very supportive

Kevin Kouzmanoff is happy to be playing in San Diego. The third baseman participated in an online chat Wednesday afternoon and fielded questions from fans on a variety of subjects, including his injured elbow, playing at PETCO, the clubhouse clown and his nickname.

Kevin Kouzmanoff: Hi everyone, this is Kevin Kouzmanoff. Let's get started.

albydere4u: I noticed on the walk-off win you hit the ball to the opposite field. Will you be hitting the ball more that way this season or are you more of a pull hitter?

Kouzmanoff: In that game they pitched me away, so I was looking to go with the pitch. This season, I'm just going to hit the ball where it's pitched. If it's inside, I'll pull it.

Jokersss: Did you play any other sports in college?

Kouzmanoff: Actually, I just played baseball in college. In high school, I wrestled, was on the golf team, played football one year and was on the diving team.

Stephy08: Is it ok for the fans to call you by the nickname Koozy?

Kouzmanoff: Koozy or Kooz is fine with me.

kylebarr: University of Nevada at Reno student here -- I was wondering what you think of your new manager?

Kouzmanoff: Bud Black is an awesome guy and manager. He's very knowledgeable about baseball.

robs1: Kevin, is your elbow ok?

Kouzmanoff: It's a lot better. It's day to day right now. I'm looking to get back in the lineup today or Friday at Dodger Stadium.

friarfire: How do you like PETCO Park so far?

Kouzmanoff: One of the best ballparks I've played in. The fans are great and very supportive. I'm happy to be in beautiful San Diego.

NathanAZ: How many starts do you expect to get this season? Do you think it will depend on your productivity?

Kouzmanoff: I would like to start every game this season, but it's not my call. If I put up the numbers I expect I can, I look to be an everyday player with the Padres.

nmsu15: How is the team chemistry this year, and what player/players have you become close to?

Kouzmanoff: It's very laid back in the clubhouse and we all get along great. I've become close with Mike Cameron, Russell Branyan, Khalil Greene, Brian Giles and many more.

kevtorres: Was your trade a surprise for you as it was for the San Diego fans?

Kouzmanoff: The trade was just as much a surprise to me as it was for the fans here. As time went on, I realized coming to San Diego was a great opportunity for my career. So far it's been everything I expected.

nmsu15: What was your major in college?

Kouzmanoff: Subatomic physics. Boring stuff, actually, studying protons and neutrons. Luckily, I found my career in baseball.

Travis35: Is third base your natural position, or was it a transition for you?

Kouzmanoff: Shortstop was my natural position. I moved to third in my first year of college.

Padre4Life: Who is the clubhouse clown?

Kouzmanoff: Brian Giles. Geoff Blum is a close second.

mstrelect: Do you think the starting pitching is strong enough to get the team past the first round of the playoffs this year?

Kouzmanoff: I think we have one of the best pitching staffs in the National League. I'm glad I'm on the Padres and don't have to face these guys.

Kouzmanoff: Hey, I've got to run in a few minutes, but have time for a few more questions.

beachclbb: Did you watch baseball while you were growing up?

Kouzmanoff: I did watch baseball growing up. I watched the Padres, actually. I grew up in Bonita and moved to Colorado in seventh grade. I have a lot good memories from watching the Padres and going to Jack Murphy Stadium.

padres760: Is San Diego a place you would like to spend your entire career?

Kouzmanoff: I really enjoy the atmosphere here in San Diego and could see myself playing here for many years to come.

Kouzmanoff: That's all the time I have today. Thanks for all the questions and sorry I couldn't get to all of them. See you at PETCO and thanks for the support! Kevin.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.