Stauffer adjusting to new role with Padres

Stauffer adjusting to new role with Padres

PHOENIX -- Other than Monday starter Jon Garland, there was only one pitcher Padres manager Bud Black wanted to stay away from on Tuesday -- reliever Tim Stauffer.

Stauffer threw two scoreless innings in a 6-3 loss to the Diamondbacks on Monday. He was able to go two innings in relief after Garland lasted four innings and another relief pitcher, Edward Mujica, threw one inning.

The Padres are still trying to figure out how resilient Stauffer's arm will be in his new role as a long reliever out of the bullpen.

"We'll see what it looks like. We won't know until we keep doing this," Black said. "... These guys have special arms. They can adapt sometimes. We're hoping that Tim can adapt."

Stauffer was one of three pitchers out of Minor League options to make the roster out of spring. He made the team on the strength of a 3.52 ERA in six games in Cactus League play. There was a thought the team might trade him to a team needing pitching.

Instead, the Padres kept him.

"I don't make management decisions. I wanted to pitch well and put myself in a position to make the team," Stauffer said. "I'm happy to be here and to get another shot."

Now he's adjusting to a new role.

Coming out of the bullpen is something different for Stauffer, who before this season had appeared in 142 professional games with all but 20 of them being starts.

Stauffer threw 33 pitches and allowed two hits in two innings with two strikeouts and one walks. Better still, he helped preserve the back end of the Padres' bullpen in a game that was 6-1 entering the ninth inning.

"I knew that was the situation I would probably be in ... coming in and going multiple innings. It felt like any other game," Stauffer said. "It will be a work in progress to see how it [arm] feels, but I don't see any restrictions whatsoever as far as being ready the next day."

Padres tidbits
Black said outfielder Scott Hairston, who didn't start either of the first two games of the season, will likely start Wednesday and likely on Friday against a left-handed pitcher, Jorge De La Rosa, in Colorado. Hairston played for the Padres from 2007-09 but was traded to Oakland last July. The Padres traded for him in the offseason, looking for a bat to combat the left-handed pitching they'll see, specifically in the division. ... Reliever Joe Thatcher, on the disabled list with a strained left shoulder, will throw on Wednesday. As Black said, "We'll see where we go from there." Thatcher was placed on the disabled list Sunday retroactive to March 26. ... Black said he plans on getting playing time for just about all of his players early. "I think it's important to keep guys as current as possible. These guys are used to playing in Spring Training."