Padres to promote Andrew Cashner for Thursday start

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Padres right-hander Andrew Cashner was sent to Double-A San Antonio on June 10 to begin making the transition from reliever to starter. After only three minor-league outings — in which he posted a 1.88 ERA and 22/3 K/BB ratio in 14 1/3 innings — the flame-throwing 25-year-old is on his way back.

According to Scott Miller of CBSSports.com, Cashner is scheduled to start for the Padres on Thursday night against the Astros at Houston’s Minute Maid Park. If it goes well (or even if it doesn’t) he’ll be a mainstay in the San Diego rotation going forward.

Cashner has averaged 98.8 mph with his fastball this year in the majors. He also boasts a decent slider and changeup, and should be able to post some impressive numbers while making half his starts at Petco Park.

Miguel Sano gained weight this offseason

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Not all players coming in to spring training are in The Best Shapes of Their Lives. Some have put on a few pounds, such as Miguel Sano, notes Twins GM Thad Levine:

Sano has been given medical clearance to engage in all baseball workouts with his teammates, his surgically reinforced left shin now completely healed, though the Twins intend to lighten his schedule to prevent any new injuries.

They’d like to lighten something else, too: His “generous carriage,” as General Manager Thad Levine delicately put it last week. Sano’s conditioning understandably lags, after a winter largely spent incapacitated by the surgery.

Sano’s conditioning has often been a topic of conversation among the members of the Minnesota press corps, though not always in good faith. For example, last year when Sano injured his shin by fouling a ball off of it, one member of the The Fourth Estate found a way to make a column out of blaming the freak injury on Sano’s conditioning. At least in this instance his colleague is correctly noting that the poor conditioning is a result of the injury and not the cause.

Still, it’s just another issue facing Sano this spring. He’s out of shape, coming off of an injury, and — not that he’s due any sympathy for it — he’s facing a likely suspension arising out of the allegations of sexual assault leveled against him late last year.

So this spring we’ll be seeing more of Sano, it seems. At least until that time we’ll be seeing less of him.