Players are starting to assemble as the Portland Beavers in Peoria, Ariz. Left-handed pitcher Ryan Ketchner, right-hander Steve Watkins and infielders Luis Cruz, Craig Stansberry and Byron Myrow were recently tabbed for Portland.

Ketchner, 24, has 10 percent hearing. He pitched with Las Vegas in 2004 and 2006.

• Jack Cust, who hit .293 with 30 homers and 77 RBIs for Portland last year, was sent to Portland by the parent San Diego Padres to the Beavers. It remains to be seen whether he plays here.

• Pitcher Tim Stauffer, a two-year Bevo trying to make the Padres, suffered a muscle strain in his right, pitching arm and will be out this week. 'I'm told it's not the main biceps,' he tells The San Diego Union-Tribune, which says the Padres have Stauffer targeted to play here. Says manager Bud Black: 'We really don't think (the injury) is anything major.'

• Mike Thompson, a Bevo last year, has a good chance to start the year in San Diego's bullpen. 'There's not a lot of flash with Mike,' Black tells The Union-Tribune, 'but he does a good job of giving the team a chance to win. He has the resiliency and the mentality to do it.'

- Jason Vondersmith

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