Padres option slugger Clark to Triple-A

Padres option slugger Clark to Triple-A

SAN DIEGO -- The Padres have moved another player over to the Minor League side, as manager Bud Black said on Monday that first baseman Matt Clark has been optioned to Triple-A Tucson.

Clark, who hit a home run on Sunday off Rangers right-hander Alexi Ogando, finished Cactus League play with a .419 average in 43 at-bats, collecting four homers and 13 RBIs. He'll be the starting first baseman for manager Terry Kennedy in Tucson.

"I thought he had a great spring, and we got him exposed to big league camp," Black said. "This year, he came to camp very comfortable and played with a lot of poise and confidence."

Black said that he expects the 25-year-old Clark -- the son of former Major League pitcher Terry Clark -- to continue to produce in 2012. Clark has 80 home runs in his first four professional seasons, but the Padres have Yonder Alonso, Jesus Guzman, Kyle Blanks and even Mark Kotsay for first base.

"This guy has produced -- a big left-handed bat who does a lot of good things at the plate," Black said.

Clark joins pitchers Joe Wieland, Casey Kelly and Jeff Suppan, who were also sent to Triple-A. Suppan is battling a right triceps strain and could open the season on the disabled list.