09/26/12 6:39 PM ET
Padres ensure winning record at Petco for season
By Tim Powers / Special to MLB.com
Denorfia gives Padres versatile option in outfield
SAN DIEGO -- While Padres outfielder Chris Denorfia seemingly does not get much playing time in left field -- normally reserved for slugger Carlos Quentin -- Denorfia does get plenty of practice at the position.As evidenced by a strong throw from left field to nail Shane Victorino at the plate in Tuesday's 2-1 win over the Dodgers, Denorfia is comfortable at any of the outfield spots, despite making significantly more starts in right field (56) as opposed to left (11). With Quentin limited to pinch-hitting duties due to a sore knee, Denorfia delivered in a crucial situation with the throw home that saved a run. Denorfia credits pregame work for his defensive versatility, knowing that the call could come to fill any of the outfield positions on a given night. The 32-year-old has also made four starts in center. "I spend a lot of time before games with Dave Roberts, our outfield coach," Denorfia said. "I move around, I know that's part of my job. I get a little action at all of the spots if I can, at least a couple of times a week." Manager Bud Black credits Denorfia's success to a focus on the fundamentals. "Deno's game is based on being a fundamentally sound player," Black said. "[Tuesday], he charged that ball well, threw a one-hop strike to [catcher Yasmani Grandal]. It was a good play."
Manager Bud Black said the Padres' rotation will be status quo through a weekend series against the Giants starting Friday. The Padres will send Andrew Werner to the mound on Friday with Eric Stults set for Saturday and Edinson Volquez scheduled to start on Sunday. The Padres will then face the Brewers for three games on the road to end the regular season. There's a chance that Anthony Bass could get a start sometime during that stretch.
The Padres, who briefly had a six-man rotation this month, are back to five starters after Andrew Cashner was shut down last week.
Outfielder Carlos Quentin remained limited to pinch-hitting duty on Wednesday. Black said Quentin's knee is improving, but Jesus Guzman made the start in left in Quentin's place.
Tim Powers is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.