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Headley not concerned by sore right knee

Special to MLB.com

SAN DIEGO -- Third baseman Chase Headley has a sore right knee. But for now, it's pretty clear that his slow start pains him worse than the knee.

The good news is that the general soreness is not related to the surgery he had last fall, according to Headley.

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SAN DIEGO -- Third baseman Chase Headley has a sore right knee. But for now, it's pretty clear that his slow start pains him worse than the knee.

The good news is that the general soreness is not related to the surgery he had last fall, according to Headley.

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"It's not any more of an issue than what you deal with throughout the year," he said. "You've always got something that doesn't feel very good."

Right now, more than the knee, it's his numbers that don't feel very good. He entered Friday's game batting just .125, and he was hitting just .125 (1-for-8) with runners in scoring position.

On the other hand, he drove home his first run of the season in the second game of Wednesday's doubleheader in Cleveland, an inside-out flare that dropped in shallow left field between the shortstop and left fielder.

Certainly, it took some weight off of his shoulders and made him feel better about things starting the current homestand.

"Not only personally, but as a team we've been struggling in those situations," Headley said. "As much as for yourself, you want to come through for your team."

Overall, the Padres were batting just .133 (10-for-75) with runners in scoring position through their first nine games. They ranked 14th in the National League with a .209 team batting average and 15th in the NL with just 20 runs.

"I know one thing -- those averages won't stay there," manager Bud Black said. "They definitely need to come up."

They started to in San Diego's 6-0 victory over the Tigers on Friday night, and Headley was front and center. He boomed an RBI double in the first and smashed a two-run homer, his first of the season, in the sixth.

"He had some good swings," manager Bud Black said after the game. "You can see some good swings coming. He hasn't had it result in a lot of hits."

Headley spoke at length afterward about how nice it was to get some early runs for starter Andrew Cashner. But make no mistake, crushing his first homer of the season was nice, too.

"It was great," Headley said. "It's one of those things where when you're going bad, you look at the video and you think, 'It's not nearly as bad as it looks.'"

Friday night, it was far better than his .167 batting average looks.

Scott Miller is a contributor to MLB.com.

San Diego Padres, Chase Headley