LAKE ELSINORE, Calif. -- The Padres finalized their Opening Day roster on Tuesday night, well before the 2 p.m. PT Wednesday deadline. The Padres held multiple meetings to decide the final roster spots.
Andy Parrino won the utility player job over Everth Cabrera, who was optioned to Triple-A Tucson. Based on his experience in the Minors, Parrino might be more accustomed to a reserve role, manager Bud Black indicated. Parrino's natural position is shortstop, but he can also play second base, third base and the outfield.
"In the Minor Leagues, he wasn't an everyday player all the time," Black said. "He was behind certain guys, and he had certain roles on a couple different teams, so really mentally he's probably more equipped to handle this type of role in the present than Cabby is."
By going to Triple-A Tucson, Cabrera will play every day.
"We still think Cabrera has a great deal of upside, and by him playing every day, he keeps getting his at-bats and his playing time," Black said. "You look at his last two years, roughly 250 at-bats in 2011 and 2010, so it probably benefits just him more to play every day."
Cabrera hit .210 this spring, and Parrino has batted .212 with five home runs. Parrino credited hitting coaches Phil Plantier and Alonzo Powell for the power.
"They worked on things with me, really relaxing up there at the plate and having some kind of routine to calm myself down, because last year things really sped up for me when I got up here," said Parrino, who hit .182 in 24 games with the Padres last season.
For the final bullpen job, the Padres picked Micah Owings over Brad Brach, who was optioned to Triple-A Tucson. Brach posted a 1.69 ERA, while Owings finished with a 7.62 ERA. Owings can be a long reliever.
"He has the ability to throw 50-60 pitches, little more length added to our bullpen. [He has] experience doing that, going multiple innings and being a long guy," Black said.
With outfielder Mark Kotsay going on the disabled list with a strained right calf, outfielder Jeremy Hermida also made the Opening Day roster.
Prospect Spangenberg excited for season
LAKE ELSINORE, Calif. -- Before the Minor League season tips off this week, Padres prospect Cory Spangenberg got a little taste of the big leagues.
Spangenberg, who was the 10th overall pick of the 2011 Draft, was among the Padres Minor Leaguers who joined Major Leaguers for the Padres' final spring game on Wednesday. The Padres faced the Kansas City Royals at San Diego's high-A affiliate Lake Elsinore, at Pete Lehr Field.
"It's a great opportunity to watch them play and watch them go about their business," Spangenberg said.
Spangenberg is expected to start with the Lake Elsinore Storm this season, after hitting .316 in 72 games between short-season Eugene (Ore.) and Class A Fort Wayne (Ind.) last season. MLB.com ranks the second baseman as the Padres' No. 6 prospect.
During the offseason, Spangenberg worked out with former Philadelphia Phillies Major Leaguer Greg Legg four times a week near Spangenberg's eastern Pennsylvania home.
"I feel like I've improved," Spangenberg said. "We'll wait and see what happens with the season. I think I've gotten better defensively. I think I've gotten a little stronger.
"[I hope] to keep on continuing to play the way I've been playing, and hopefully move up and keep on moving up in the system," he added.
Spangenberg also spent time at Major League camp early in Spring Training. There, he was able to chat with Padres second baseman Orlando Hudson.
"I've been with them during Spring Training a little bit, so I got to pick their brains then, so we're sitting back and watching now," Spangenberg said. "I talked to [Hudson] a little about the game, just little tips that help me out in the long run."
Padres scheduled starting pitcher Matt Palmer arrived on a plane from Arizona in Ontario, Calif., about 2 1/2 hours before first pitch.
Black said before the game that Jerry Sullivan might have started in Palmer's place. But Palmer showed up to the ballpark on time and started.
The Padres' Opening Day lineup against Dodgers left-hander Clayton Kershaw on Thursday could be similar to the one that faced Royals left-hander Jonathan Sanchez on Tuesday at Petco Park. In that exhibition game, Chris Denorfia started in right field and batted second, Jesus Guzman was in left field and batted cleanup, and Yonder Alonso was at first base and batted sixth.
Sarah Trotto is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.