BOSTON -- Outfielder Will Venable hopes to return to the Padres' starting lineup on Thursday after being sidelined for two games with a sore left hamstring.
Venable tested the hamstring 3 1/2 hours before Wednesday's game against the Red Sox by running in the outfield as first-base coach Dave Roberts, who is in charge of the outfielders, watched.
"I feel fine," Venable said.
Venable missed Monday's series finale in Miami and then didn't play in Tuesday's 4-1 loss to the Red Sox, as the team wanted to steer clear of using him to give the hamstring extra rest.
It appears that tactic worked, and just in time, as starting on Thursday, the Padres will face three right-handed pitchers in their next four games.
"Will's doing much better, he's much improved," said Padres manager Bud Black. "You might see him tonight in some capacity."
Venable said the injury happened on Saturday against the Marlins when he tripled to lead off the fifth inning. Well, at least that's when he thinks it occurred.
"It was weird, because the triple the second day in Miami, I was coming around second and I stumbled a little awkwardly. Because Miami is so humid, I didn't feel anything [immediately]. Then in the middle of the night, it felt tight."
Venable played most of the game on Sunday even though his hamstring wasn't 100 percent. He left the game in the eighth inning when Chris Denorfia pinch-hit for him.
"I didn't feel great and I was putting my team at risk," Venable said.