Chris James and John Kruk will get a chance to start, and a chance to start over.
The Philadelphia Phillies traded James to the San Diego Padres for Kruk and Randy Ready on Friday night, a deal that will give all three slumping players a regular role.Phillies manager Nick Leyva said Kruk will start in left field and Ready will play third base.
Padres manager Jack McKeon said James will play either third base or left.
"It gives us some power from the right side," McKeon said. "We need that."
The Padres have hit just 31 home runs in 55 games this season. Jack Clark leads the team with six, but has been pitched around often this year and leads the majors with 48 walks.
James led the Phillies with 19 homers last season and hit 17 home runs in 1987.
"I feel very sad right now," said James, who was in tears when the trade was announced. "You hate to leave your roots and this is my roots. This is where I came up and I have lots of friends here."
James said he knew he was the subject of trade rumors, "but with Mike Schmidt retiring, I figured I'd be OK."
James, 26, is batting .207 with two home runs and 19 RBIs. He had inherited the Phillies' third base job when Schmidt retired this week, but is an 0-for-31 rut.
Kruk, 28, is batting .184 with three home runs and six runs batted in. Ready, 29, is hitting .254 with no homers and five RBIs in 28 games.
Kruk, who started 24 games in the outfield this season, has been in a two-year slump.
As a rookie in 1986, Kruk batted .309 with four homers and in 1987, he hit .313 with 20 home runs and 91 RBIs. Last season, he was injured and batted .241 with nine homers and 44 RBIs.
"He (McKeon) called me in and said I wasn't going to get much opportunity to play. He said he would try to trade me somewhere where they felt I had an opportunity to play," Kruk said. "I'm getting a chance to play. But we had a chance to win and Philadelphia is struggling right now."
Ready batted .309 with 12 homers and 54 in 1987. Last year, he fell to .266 with seven homers and 39 RBIs.
The Padres will call up Gary Green from Class AAA Las Vegas.