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.
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