Hundley keys Padres again with pinch-hit single in 11th

SAN DIEGO -- Nick Hundley was surrounded by a pack of reporters and cameramen when the San Diego Padres' other catcher, Yorvit Torrealba, walked by and offered an unsolicited opinion.

"He's the best catcher on this team, I'm telling you," Torrealba said.

With the San Diego Padres these days, that's hard to tell.

Hundley's pinch-hit single brought in Lance Zawadzki from second base with two outs in the 11th inning to lift the Padres to a 3-2 win over the Washington Nationals on Sunday.

Hundley didn't start despite hitting a three-run homer in Saturday night's win. Then again, Torrealba had three hits on Friday night and he sat Saturday night.

"Usually when a guy hits a homer he usually plays the next day, but today I decided to catch Yorvit, one of the rare times," manager Bud Black said.

Black said he started Torrealba mostly because he'd been working well with Jon Garland, who allowed two home runs to Ryan Zimmerman but otherwise pitched well, getting 15 ground outs in seven innings.

"Basically, what the skipper is trying to say is that he has confidence in both of us," Torrealba said. "It's a great feeling, man. In a good way, it's good competition between me and Nick, because he knows how good he is and I know how good I can be. As long as we're winning, we're happy. If he's playing, you see me the first one up there if he hits a home run: 'Attaboy, good job.' Same thing when I'm getting my hits.

"It is a great feeling because we're both playing," Torrealba said. "Maybe he wants to play every day, maybe I want to play every day. The good thing about it is we're basically playing almost every day anyway."

Hundley and Torrealba have started 25 games apiece.

So who gets the start in Monday night's game against the New York Mets?

"I have no idea," said Hundley, who was the Padres' last available position player on Sunday. "Ask Buddy. We'll come in and figure it out tomorrow. But I'll be ready to play if they tell me. We want to be in there every day. That's kind of up to Buddy, and fortunately now, I think we're making it tough on him to decide. This is a good thing, a positive thing. We're both playing well, both driving in runs."

Zawadzki started the winning rally with an infield single that deflected off pitcher Sean Burnett's glove. Second baseman Adam Kennedy fielded it and his errant throw went into the Padres' dugout, putting Zawadzki on second. Matt Capps relieved and Hundley singled to left. There was no throw home as the Padres took two of three.

"My only chance is to try and throw it as hard as I can on the run," Kennedy said. "There was no other option."

Luke Gregerson (1-1) pitched two perfect innings for the win. Burnett fell to 0-3.

Zimmerman's two homers gave him 10 for the season.

Zimmerman homered off the top of the wall in right-center with two outs in the first and then tied the game at 2 when he homered into the seats in left field with two outs in the sixth.

They were Zimmerman's first home runs since his last multihomer game, May 13 at Colorado. He has seven career multihomer games.

Other than the homers, the Nationals struggled against the Padres.

"They can pitch," Washington manager Jim Riggleman said. "We knew that coming in here. Their bullpen is outstanding. Finally, there at the end, we got [Mike] Adams, [Heath] Bell and Gregerson out of the game. I was hoping we could hold it there and face somebody else other than those three guys."

Garland had given up only three home runs total coming into Sunday, and none in his previous eight starts.

Garland allowed two runs and five hits, struck out four and walked one. Garland recorded his 1,000th career strikeout when he fanned Josh Willingham in the fourth. He has 1,002 in his 11-year career.

Washington's Livan Hernandez allowed two runs and eight hits in 6 1/3 innings, struck out four and walked none.

San Diego had gone ahead 2-1 in the fourth on Torrealba's RBI groundout and Tony Gwynn Jr.'s RBI single.

Game notes
Padres OF Scott Hairston, on the disabled list with a strained left hamstring, began a rehab assignment Sunday afternoon with Class A Lake Elsinore. ... Padres RHP Tim Stauffer, out since having an appendectomy on May 11, is expected to throw another side session on Monday. He'll probably begin a rehab assignment next week.