Padres Spring Notes

Everyone in San Diego knows who will be the opening day starter for the Padres and the rest of the rotation doesn't seem as cloudy as it should with so many pitchers in camp.

On paper, the Padres don't have an opening in their rotation.

Jake Peavy is No. 1, followed by Chris Young, Shawn Estes, Woody Williams and Chan Ho Park.

But the Padres have been seeking an additional starter because Estes is coming off an injury and Park and Williams will be trying to rebound from poor seasons. It now appears that if they are to get help, it will have to come from one of the pitchers in camp.

Efforts to re-sign free agent Pedro Astacio ended when Astacio signed earlier this week with the Nationals -- to replace injured former Padre Brian Lawrence. And the hopes of obtaining David Wells via a trade are getting slimmer by the day.

The leading starting candidates in the Padres camp are Clay Hensley, Tim Stauffer, Andy Ashby, Dewon Brazelton and Seth Etherton.

The Padres would like to keep Hensley in the bullpen as the seventh-inning bridge to Scott Linebrink and Trevor Hoffman. Stauffer was the No. 5 man in the Padres rotation in the middle of last season. Ashby, 38, is trying to come back from three rounds of surgery (two elbow, one shoulder).

Notes:

Terrmel Sledge, the leading candidate to be the Padres' fourth outfielder, suffered a slight calf strain Wednesday. He missed most of last season following surgery to repair an almost detached hamstring.


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