08/14/12 7:14 PM ET
Friars recall Layne from Double-A; Hinshaw DFA'd
By Corey Brock / MLB.com
Layne had just been sent from Triple-A Tucson to Double-A San Antonio after posting a 7.77 ERA in five starts. He was 27 years old and taking a step backward wasn't anything to be excited about.
"Any time you're 27 and in Double-A, you question what you're doing," Layne said. "But at that point, I wasn't ready to give it up."
It's a good thing he didn't. On Tuesday, the Padres recalled Layne from Double-A San Antonio, as he took the place on the 25-man roster -- and 40-man roster -- of left-handed reliever Alex Hinshaw, who was designated for assignment.
"I really wasn't expecting it," Layne said Tuesday upon arriving at Turner Field.
The Padres asked the left-handed Layne to pitch out of the bullpen after sending him to San Antonio. He jumped at the opportunity.
"My heart has always been in relieving," he said. "I was having fun doing it. It made it fun to come to the ballpark each day. You can throw every day. I love being out there."
Layne had a 3.28 ERA in 32 games for the Missions with 36 strikeouts in 35 2/3 innings. He also lowered his arm angle and saw a jump in velocity as well as an improved cutter.
"He's done really well since we put him in the left-handed role," said vice president of player development and international scouting Randy Smith. "His stuff played better."
Layne has mostly been a left-handed specialist, which is something the Padres have truly lacked since Joe Thatcher went on the disabled list with tendinitis in his right knee on July 26.
Layne has history with Padres general manager Josh Byrnes and assistant general manager A.J. Hinch, as he was drafted in the 26th round of the 2007 Draft. He was traded to the Padres in May after pitching for Triple-A Reno.
Hinshaw was 1-1 with a 4.50 ERA in 31 games for the Padres. Previously, he had a 3.72 ERA in 14 games with Triple-A Tucson before being promoted.
Thayer's return to closing for Padres a breeze
ATLANTA -- There wasn't much drama in Dale Thayer's return to the closer role for the Padres against the Braves on Monday.
Thayer, filling in for injured All-Star closer Huston Street for the second time this season, needed all of 10 pitches to dispense with the Braves in the ninth inning of a 4-1 victory.
"They were swinging early, so that makes it a lot easier," Thayer said.
The Padres feel comfortable -- and very fortunate -- to have Thayer on the staff, especially since Street has now missed 32 games, 29 with a strained right lat muscle and three more with a strained left calf injury he sustained Friday in Pittsburgh.
For Thayer, his save against the Braves was his first since May 19 against the Angels. He converted all five of his save opportunities in May, when Street was first on the DL.
He's appeared in 42 games this season, boasts a 3.51 ERA and opponents are hitting .245 against him. Most of those appearances have come in a setup role after Street returned from the disabled list on June 5.
But those innings and situations rate differently than attempting to get those final three outs of a game, Thayer said.
"I think you get a little more adrenaline going and you've almost got to tone it down to make sure you throw strikes," he said. "It's just a little different."
The 31-year-old Thayer, of course, is no stranger to closing game. He entered this season with 173 saves over a 10-year Minor League career.
First part of Grandal's rehab assignment set
ATLANTA -- Rookie catcher Yasmani Grandal, who was a hit in his first full month in the Major Leagues, will fly from Atlanta to San Diego on Tuesday to begin a Minor League rehabilitation stint with Class A Lake Elsinore.
San Diego manager Bud Black said that Grandal will serve as the designated hitter Wednesday and then catch for the Storm on Thursday. Lake Elsinore is situated about one hour north of San Diego.
Grandal has been on the disabled list since July 31 with a strained right oblique muscle, an injury that occurred taking a swing on July 30 against the Reds.
Grandal, a switch-hitter, has reported no pain while throwing to the bases and taking batting practice in both the indoor cage at Turner Field and on the field the last two days.
At the time of the injury, Grandal was hitting .312 with five home runs and 15 RBIs in his first month in the big leagues.
There's a chance that Grandal could be reinstated from the disabled list before or during a weekend series against the Giants at Petco Park that begins Friday.