SAN FRANCISCO -- Another day, another piece of good news on the San Diego Padres' injury front.
On the same day when second baseman Jedd Gyorko returned from paternity leave and outfielder Seth Smith was deemed healthy enough to play in the field, manager Bud Black said corner outfielder Carlos Quentin will join the team for the first time since spring training when the Padres begin a 10-game homestand Friday night.
Quentin, who stayed behind in Arizona to deal with a painful left knee bruise, is not ready to make his big-league season debut yet. However, Black indicated if Quentin looks and feels healthy Friday, he could be sent on a minor league rehab stint (probably to nearby Class A Lake Elsinore) as early as this weekend.
Black couldn't give a timetable, but he would not rule out getting one of the team's most potent bats back in his lineup before the end of the homestand.
Getting Quentin back to join a healthy Smith would give Black the type of outfield depth he envisioned in spring training but hasn't had the luxury of employing yet this season.
Quentin hit 13 home runs in 82 games last season after averaging nearly 25 over the previous five seasons.