San Diego recalled outfielder Blake Tekotte, less than 48 hours after optioning him to Double-A San Antonio.
Denorfia had not played since leaving a game last Sunday. He had been working out attempting to return but manager Bud Black said the team finally decided it couldn't play a man short any longer.
A 24-year-old rookie, Tekotte is making his third stint with the Padres this season. He was called up on Monday and appeared in two games before being sent back down when reliever Joe Thatcher returned from the disabled list.
A .275 hitter in 394 career minor league games, Tekotte is 6 for 24 with an RBI and two stolen bases in 12 games for the Padres.