Padres Demote Nick Hundley, Promote Yasmani Grandal

Nick Hundley of the San Diego Padres reacts after striking out during an interleague baseball game against the Texas Rangers at Petco Park in San Diego, California. (Photo by Denis Poroy/Getty Images)

Nick Hundley was one of the Padres' brightest spots in 2011. This year? Not so much.

Nick Hundley had a fine 2011 as the San Diego Padres' starting catcher, hitting .288/.347/.477 at age 27; San Diego liked him so much they signed him to a three-year deal worth $9 million before 2012 began.

It hasn't worked out. Hundley hasn't hit at all, going .166/.226/.259 this season in a not-small-sample-size 213 plate appearances. This has led the Padres to make a move. Chris Jenkins:

Only after the 10-2 Padres’ loss at Coors Field was it broken to catcher Nick Hundley – whose batting average has plummeted to .166 over the first three months of a hugely disappointing season – that the four-year veteran with the new contract extension is being sent down to Triple-A Tucson to work out his struggles at the plate. Called up to take his place is celebrated minor-league catcher Yasmani Grandal, who was due to play in the Futures Game as part of All-Star Game festivities, but is expected to join the Padres in Denver on Saturday.

Grandal was one of the key players in the Mat Latos-for-Yonder Alonso trade last winter between the Padres and Reds. He played in one game earlier this month for San Diego, making his major-league debut with a single at-bat, a flyout.

He'll get more playing time now, and if he shows well, Hundley will have to tear it up in the Pacific Coast League to get back.

For more on the Padres, please visit Gaslamp Ball.

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