Stults to start Padres' first spring game

Stults to start Padres' first spring game

PEORIA, Ariz. -- The Padres have 29 able-bodied pitchers in big league camp, which makes the process of finding innings for all of them this Spring Training a little tricky.

But, as the annual charity game against the Mariners on Thursday draws closer, manager Bud Black said Monday that veteran left-hander Eric Stults will start the game.

Stults is scheduled to throw one inning, and the Padres will likely use six or seven pitchers in that game, including Minor League right-handers Donn Roach and Kevin Quackenbush.

Last season, Stults led the Padres in victories (11) and innings (203 2/3) while making a career-high 33 starts. He had a 3.93 ERA and is projected to be the fifth starter in the team's rotation.

Thursday's game is the first of 28 contests the Padres will play in Arizona before breaking camp. The team will then face the Indians in two exhibition games in San Diego before starting the regular season on March 30 against the Dodgers.

The Padres don't have any 'B' games scheduled to get pitchers and position players extra work, adding to Padres pitching coach Darren Balsley's challenge to find enough innings for the pitchers in camp.

The only pitcher on the 40-man roster not in camp is left-hander Alex Torres, who has yet to report to Arizona while getting his visa issues worked out in his native Venezuela.

Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.