and miscellaneous other stuff ---- Non-roster outfielder aims to return to bigs after knee injury http://sandiego.padres.mlb.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20080221&content_id=2382937&vkey=spt2008news&fext=.jsp&c_id=sd PEORIA, Ariz. -- First, he had to rebuild his right knee. Then his confidence and finally, if all goes according to plan this spring, his career as a Major League outfielder. With nary a Major League at-bat since 2005, Jody Gerut, ravaged by knee injuries during the last three years, decided his best way to get back to the Major Leagues was to include a stint of winter ball in Venezuela. The move proved beneficial on a lot of fronts for the 30-year-old Gerut, who hit .390 in 141 at-bats with a .488 on-base percentage during the Venezuelan Winter League. That got him back on the radar of a lot of teams, including the Padres, who signed him to a Minor League contract last month. Friar notes: Pitcher Mauro Zarate, picked up off waivers from the Marlins last October, has what Black termed as a "tender shoulder." Zarate was scheduled to throw of the mound on Thursday, but was limited to throwing on the side. ... Still no word on when pitcher Enrique Gonzalez (visa issues) will arrive in camp. Gonzalez still hasn't left his native Venezuela. ... Black said the Padres will have an intrasquad game on Feb. 27, a day before the Padres play their annual charity game against the Mariners. Black might have another intrasquad game on Feb. 26, though he's still considering that. ... Black's small office in the Peoria Sports Complex had over a dozen reporters in attendance on Thursday. Why? A large contingent of Japanese reporters wanted to ask him about new second baseman, Tadahito Iguchi. ... Black and general manager Kevin Towers each addressed the team before the first full workout on Thursday. Black said his message was, essentially, "I believe in our team. We feel as though we have talented players and they'll show it." ... Former Padres third baseman Russell Branyan has signed a Minor League contract with the Milwaukee Brewers. ... Pitcher Clay Hensley, working back from labrum surgery in September, is throwing from 90 feet and expects to work that back to 105 feet sometime next week.