Padres Trade Hunter

The San Diego Padres traded Brian Hunter to the St. Louis Cardinals for Kerry Robinson on Monday. Hunter had hit .209 in 43 at bats this spring while Robinson hit .395 in 44 at bats. Robinson could become the starting centerfielder for the Friars until Jay Payton returns to health.

In a trade of outfielders, the Padres acquired Kerry Robinson from the Cardinals for Brian Hunter.

"(I'm) very pleasantly surprised," Robinson said. "I may have an opportunity to get a little bit more playing time, and I hear nothing but good things about their manager. So I kind of can't wait to get out to the West Coast." Robinson, 30, showed promise in his 2000 season in the minors hitting .318 in extended playing time. Since then he has been a steady fixture on the Cardinal bench, getting over 180 at bats the past three seasons. Since he posted his best numbers at an older age, Robinson never got an everyday starting job.

"We didn't see a spot for Kerry on our final roster," general manager Walt Jocketty told the AP. "We appreciate everything that he's done as a Cardinal and hope that this opportunity with San Diego will allow him to receive more playing time."

Robinson has a career average of .263 in 365 games in three seasons with the Cardinals. Kerry spent limited time with Tampa Bay and Cincinnati before joining the Cardinals in 2001.

Hunter was in Padres camp on a minor league contract and is a lifetime .264 hitter in more than 10 seasons with Houston, Detroit, Seattle, Colorado, Cincinnati and Philadelphia. He has 260 stolen bases and led the American League with 74 for Detroit in 1997. He hit .235 last season for Houston.

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