Rule 5 pick Cordoba makes outfield debut

Notes on Margot, Myers, Schimpf

Rule 5 pick Cordoba makes outfield debut

Bill Center, longtime sportswriter for U-T San Diego, is an employee of the Padres.

Padres fans didn't have to wait long to see what manager Andy Green would do for a fourth outfielder now that Jabari Blash has been returned to Triple-A El Paso to get more at-bats.

On the same day that Blash was returned to the Chihuahuas, Rule 5 draftee Allen Cordoba had his debut in left field as part of a double switch on Friday.

The Padres were down to three outfielders -- Travis Jankowski and rookies Manuel Margot and Hunter Renfroe -- on their roster when Blash was optioned. They did have several players on the 25-man roster who had made spot appearances in the outfield in the past, including Luis Sardinas, Yangervis Solarte and Christian Bethancourt.

But the first player to be cast in the role of the fourth outfielder was Cordoba, the 21-year-old who had never played above rookie ball before the Padres claimed him out of the Cardinals organization with the third pick in last December's Rule 5 Draft.

Through the season's first 11 games, Cordoba has performed beyond expectations. He got his third hit on Friday night in Atlanta and is the only Padre with a pinch-hit this season (1-for-4). He made his first Major League start on April 8 against the Giants at Petco Park and got both his first hit and scored his first run.

He's appeared in seven of the Padres' first 11 games. And now, he's added left field to his resume.

"Cordoba jumps at anything we ask him to do," Green said of the Panama native during Spring Training. "He can play the game and nothing scares him off."

Certainly not playing left before a packed house in the debut of new SunTrust Park in Atlanta.

Game notes:

• Margot extended his hitting streak to a seventh straight game on Friday night in Atlanta. He is 11-for-29 (.379) with three doubles, three homers, two walks, four RBIs and seven runs scored during the streak. Margot has a .419 on-base percentage and a .793 slugging percentage during the streak for a 1.212 OPS.

• First baseman Wil Myers was 1-for-4 on Friday, as his average dipped under .400 to .386. He has hit safely in nine of the Padres' last 10 games and is 10-for-19 (.526) during a five-game hitting streak with two doubles, two triples and two home runs with six RBIs and five runs scored. His slugging percentage during the streak -- which includes the second cycle in Padres' history -- is 1.158.

• Speaking of streaks, third baseman Ryan Schimpf has drawn walks in six straight games -- with a total of 11 during the run. He has 11 walks on the season against four hits. Schimpf is hitting .148 with 13 strikeouts in 27 at-bats, but he has two home runs. Schimpf's on-base percentage is .395 and his slugging percentage is .370 for a .765 OPS that is 617 points above his batting average.

• The Padres will be one of the first teams to benefit from the new 10-day disabled list (which replaced the 15-day DL) when right-hander Trevor Cahill starts Sunday's game in Atlanta. Cahill was placed on the disabled list on April 8 with a back strain. He will have missed only one start.