Ambres' injury has Padres shorthanded

Ambres' injury has Padres shorthanded

SAN DIEGO -- It wasn't all that long ago when San Diego manager Bud Black wondered how he was going to find time with his overabundance of outfielders.

But after a rash of recent injuries, Black will consider asking general manager Kevin Towers to add another outfielder for the final two weeks of the season.

On Friday, outfielder Chip Ambres injured his left knee running out a ground ball at first base in the first inning, which eventually forced him from the game.

Black indicated Saturday that Ambres had a strained knee that was "a little concerning." Black went on to say that Ambres wouldn't be available Saturday and that his future status might be in doubt.

Ambres joins center fielder Jody Gerut (sprained left middle finger) and Scott Hairston (torn ligament, left thumb) who are hurt, leaving Black with four outfielders -- Brian Giles and rookies Chase Headley, Will Venable and Drew Macias.

Gerut has appeared twice in games as a pinch-runner but has missed the past l6 games as a starter after suffering the injury trying to steal a base against Arizona on Aug. 27.

"He's not making a lot of progress," Black said of Gerut, who won't likely play in this series against the Giants.

Hairston is out for the remainder of the year after suffering the thumb injury on the same day Gerut was hurt, leaving Venable to get all but a handful of at-bats in center field, which isn't a bad thing as far as the Padres are concerned as they want to use September as a time to evaluate him.

So far, Venable has been up to the task, hitting .340 in 47 at-bats with already six multi-hit games in the 14 games he's appeared in.

As for getting reinforcements, Black indicated the Edgar Gonzalez could play the outfield in a pinch if needed. Black said he would also "talk to Kevin ... about our depth."

Corey Brock is a reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.