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03/23/11 8:12 PM ET

Ludwick among group of Padres on mend

PEORIA, Ariz. -- There's a decent list of Padres players who are nursing lingering injury issues, though only reliever Joe Thatcher will begin the season on the disabled list.

San Diego manager Bud Black said Wednesday that Ryan Ludwick -- who in the past 10 days has fouled two balls off his left shin -- would be in the lineup on Thursday, when the Padres travel to Surprise to face the Rangers.

Eric Patterson, who looks to have won a job as a utility man, still has a sore left hamstring and won't be available for a few days.

"He's sore. We want to be real careful," Black said.

Shortstop Jason Bartlett has had a nagging sore right knee in camp, though he could be in the lineup for games this weekend, Black said.

"We're hoping it resolves itself by the weekend," Black said.

Outfielder Aaron Cunningham, who was scratched from Wednesday's game against the Brewers because of a high calf strain, is feeling better, according to Black. He, too, could return by the weekend.

Thatcher, who hasn't appeared in a game this spring because of a sore left shoulder, will begin the season on the disabled list. He had a cortisone shot in the shoulder earlier this week.

Thatcher had an MRI recently that showed no structural damage to the shoulder.

Hip doesn't bother Stauffer in six sharp innings

PEORIA, Ariz. -- There wasn't much to like about the way Tim Stauffer began his outing Wednesday with the Reds, though his finish had the right-hander and his manager pleased.

Stauffer, pitching for the first time since March 13 due to a sore right hip flexor, allowed a long two-run home run to Juan Francisco in the second inning but retired 12 of the last 13 batters he faced in the Padres' 10-7 victory over the Reds.

Stauffer, projected as the No. 3 pitcher in the rotation, went six innings, allowing six hits with one walk and four strikeouts. His spring ERA, with one start remaining, is 3.66 in 19 2/3 innings.

"I wasn't too sharp the first few innings ... but I was able to settle down and find my mechanics," said Stauffer, who threw 81 pitches, 53 for strikes.

Stauffer was able to test his hip a few times covering first base on ground balls to the right side and reported no lingering pain.

"It felt good ... I was able to test it a few times," he said. "It wasn't really pain but more discomfort. It's felt progressively better."

Stauffer became the second Padres pitcher this spring to reach the six-inning mark. Wade LeBlanc did so on March 20.

"As the game went on, he got more in a rhythm, his tempo was better and he worked well with [catcher Nick Hundley]," Padres manager Bud Black said.

Hoffpauir eager to make most of final week

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Time might be running out in Arizona, but infielder Jarrett Hoffpauir said on Wednesday that he's determined to make the best of it.

Hoffpauir, who has been limited to eight at-bats in Cactus League play due to a nagging right quadriceps injury, is close to getting on the field again.

"We're shooting for Friday," Hoffpauir said. "We've got to get some stuff done over the next two days, but I'm trying to get some at-bats in. I want to take advantage of these last few days."

The Padres will break camp Tuesday and head to St. Louis and, truth be told, Hoffpauir was probably never going to make the 25-man roster even if he stayed healthy all spring.

But the Padres thought enough of him to claim him off waivers in October and place him on their 40-man roster, intrigued by his .285 career average in the Minor Leagues and his pop (16 home runs last season in Triple-A) for a middle infielder.

Hoffpauir, who is hitting .375 with one home run in those eight at-bats this spring, is an interesting case for the team because he's out of Minor League options and has to clear waivers for the Padres to retain him.

"You never know what's going to happen. That's why I want to get some at-bats ... and show these guys that I'm healthy," Hoffpauir said.

Hoffpauir has been getting daily treatment on his right quad, though he said the best thing he's done for the injury is not push it.

"The three or four days off it have really helped," he said.

Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.