WASHINGTON -- James Darnell had what his manager considered to be a "highlight-reel play" in Sunday's loss to the Phillies, when he ranged far to his right for a Hunter Pence ground ball and then made a leaping throw all the way across the diamond for the out.
"Wasn't that great? That was somewhat acrobatic," Padres manager Bud Black said. "It was nifty glove work, and a do-or-die play."
Darnell, who had been splitting time between third base and left field with Triple-A Tucson before he was promoted on May 11, said this was the first time he's made a play like that in a game, though not the first time he's worked on it.
"It's a play I've always practiced," he said. "[Pence is] a fast runner. I just had to take a shot at it."
The Padres asked Darnell, a third baseman by trade, to give the outfield a whirl last season in order to increase his versatility, and because third baseman Chase Headley wasn't going anywhere.
Darnell said the biggest adjustment isn't learning how to pursue fly balls -- the routes and angles -- but more so the different throws required. As an infielder, Darnell typically throws from a lower arm angle than in the outfield, where he's been more over-the-top with his throwing motion.
"You have got to make sure your body is adjusted right," said Darnell, who experienced soreness in his right arm last season after playing the outfield, presumably because he was working different muscles. "When you're playing, you have to make a mental note of that."
Hermida to have surgery for sports hernia
WASHINGTON -- Outfielder Jeremy Hermida, on the disabled list since April 27 with a strained left adductor, will have surgery on Tuesday in Philadelphia.
San Diego manager Bud Black said Hermida will have sports hernia surgery that will sideline him for four to six weeks. The surgery will be performed by Dr. William Myers, who performed a similar surgery on Josh Hamilton of the Rangers last November.
"It just got too painful, and it wasn't going to go away," Black said on Monday.
The Padres completed a three-game series in Philadelphia on Sunday, and Hermida remained behind for a consultation and then subsequent surgery on Tuesday.
Hermida made the Opening Day roster in large part because Carlos Quentin had knee surgery on March 19 and started the season on the disabled list, as did Mark Kotsay because of a strained right calf injury he suffered at the end of Spring Training.
Hermida was hitting .250 with two RBIs in 27 plate appearances over 13 games. He went on the disabled list on April 28, retroactive to April 27.
San Diego catcher Nick Hundley had sports hernia surgery after the 2009 season and said the first few days after surgery were very painful.
Friars make 'awe-inspiring' Pentagon visit
WASHINGTON -- A group of Padres players and coaches spent Monday morning taking a tour of the Pentagon, where they met with the leadership of the United States Army, Navy and Marine Corps.
Players who made the trip included John Baker, Luke Gregerson, Clayton Richard and Joe Thatcher, as well as coaches Glenn Hoffman, Dave Roberts and Alonzo Powell.
"It was cool. We had a Marine lead us around, and we got to see some of the most powerful people in our military," Thatcher said. "It's pretty mind-blowing to think about the decisions that have been made there."
The players also met with Sergeant Major of the Army, Raymond F. Chandler III, who is the most senior enlisted member of the Army.
Players and coaches posed for photos at various stops on the tour, including in the press room, where they stood behind the podium and pretended to field questions.
"It was a pretty awe-inspiring trip," Thatcher said.
Outfielder Mark Kotsay, who left Saturday's game in Philadelphia with a tight lower back, said Monday that he was feeling better after treatment and that he was "making progress." Manager Bud Black said it's unlikely that Kotsay will play Monday or Tuesday against the Nationals. "Mark is doing better. We hope that by the time we get back to California [on Wednesday], that he will be healthy."
Infielder Logan Forsythe started a rehabilitation stint on Monday with Triple-A Tucson. Forsythe, who suffered a broken sesamoid bone in his left foot in Spring Training in March, has been playing in extended spring games in Arizona. With Tucson, he'll see time at third base, shortstop and second base.