PHOENIX -- Although Xavier Nady hasn't appeared in the Majors since 2012, Padres manager Bud Black recognizes what the 35-year-old veteran can bring to the table. A career .270 hitter over parts of 11 big league seasons, Nady offers much more than traditional organizational depth.
"His experience, his versatility and his talent is something we're going to look long and hard at," Black said. "He's an interesting guy for us and how it lines up for him."
The last couple of years haven't been easy for Nady. After hitting just .184 in 59 big leagues games in 2012 split between the Nationals and Giants, he spent all of 2013 in the Minors playing for both the Royals' and Rockies' Triple-A affiliates.
The Padres, who drafted Nady in 2000, gave the veteran another shot in January when they signed him to a Minor League deal that included an invitation to big league camp. With a total of 14 outfielders in the Padres' clubhouse at the start of Spring Training, Nady certainly faces long odds to make the Opening Day roster, but Black said he'll be given every chance to turn some heads.
"He's going to get some playing time at first base and in the outfield," Black said. "I know last year he was in Kansas City with a chance to do some things, but he got injured and it really set him back as far as being able to show the Royals what he can do. This year is a little different, he feels good and is ready to go. He's excited for the challenge to make our club."
Tyler Emerick is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less