PHOENIX -- No one was happier that the Padres were able to sign their player development contract with the Fort Wayne TinCaps on Tuesday than Randy Smith, the Padres vice president of player development and international scouting.

The Padres deal with Fort Wayne runs through the 2014 season.

"It's probably one of the most desirable spots in all of baseball and not just the Midwest League," Smith said. "We have had a great relationship there. They provide a lot of us and we've provided them a great product."

The TinCaps recently lost in the Midwest League championship series, but have reached the playoffs nine times in 12 years since becoming the Class A affiliate of the Padres.

Smith knows that Fort Wayne and its downtown ballpark, Parkview Field, which opened in 2009, were not only a very attractive option for the Padres, but for other Major League teams looking to potentially move their Class A affiliates as well.

"They could have had their choice of anyone in that league," Smith said. "It's very desirable spot. I'm sure a lot of others were interested."

The 2013 season will mark the 15th-consecutive year of the Padres and TinCaps affiliation. Since the club moved to Parkview Field, the TinCaps have posted a 309-250 (.553) record, second-best in the Midwest League over that span.

Injured Quentin insists he'll be back this season

PHOENIX -- Outfielder Carlos Quentin, who on Tuesday missed his sixth consecutive start with soreness in his right knee, is adamant that he will play again this season.

Quentin, who has just four at-bats in the Padres last nine games, tested his knee during pregame drills before the start of a three-game series against the D-backs on Tuesday.

"I'm going to go out and get a lot more activity," Quentin said prior to batting practice. "If it responds well, then we'll be closer."

Quentin, who had surgery on the knee in March and didn't make his first appearance until May 28, is having pain in the knee when he's in his hitting stance and when he puts weight on the knee.

Quentin was asked that if opting to shut himself down and rest the knee the remainder of the regular season was an option.

"It's important to finish on the field with my teammates," he said. "I'm looking forward to getting back out there."

San Diego manager Bud Black said there was a chance that Quentin could be available to pinch-hit in the game on Tuesday.

"He's gaining on it," Black said. "That's a good sign."

Maybin sits with sore left Achilles tendon

PHOENIX -- Center fielder Cameron Maybin was out of the starting lineup on Tuesday, two days after he left a game with soreness in his left Achilles tendon.

Maybin departed Sunday's 12-11 victory over the Rockies with soreness in the tendon, something that has been bothering him of late.

"It's doing OK, it's still a little sore," said Padres manager Bud Black. "We spoke today about if starting today's game would be beneficial. We decided that getting off the Achilles was a good idea. We hope the pain subsides a little."

Will Venable got the start in center field on Tuesday against the D-backs.

The injury comes at a time when Maybin is swinging the bat as good as he has all season. He's hitting .398 in his last 25 games, which is the best average in the Major Leagues over that span. He's tied his career-high with four hits twice in his last 25 games -- Aug. 19 and 21.

Overall, Maybin is hitting .307 in his last 64 games to raise his season average to .248, while he's also been able to cut down on strikeouts as well.

Gregerson named Roberto Clemente Award nominee

PHOENIX -- Reliever Luke Gregerson was named the Padres' 2012 nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award presented by Chevrolet.

Gregerson is one of 30 club finalists for the annual award, which recognizes a Major League Baseball player who best represents the game of baseball through positive contributions on and off the field, including sportsmanship and community involvement.

"It's an honor to be nominated for the Roberto Clemente Award," Gregerson said in a release. "As athletes, we are put in a unique position to help in ways that others can't. I am lucky to have been given the opportunity to contribute off the field."

Gregerson has regularly volunteered his time for club-organized events. He has participated in Rady Children's Hospital's Annual Celebration of Champions run to celebrate the courage and determination of children and young adults who are fighting cancer. Gregerson also visits with kids from the Make-A-Wish Foundation once a month during their VIP Night at Petco Park.

He's also served as a celebrity waiter at the STAR/PAL "Celebrity Waiters Luncheon." STAR/PAL offers free youth programs and positive interaction with committed volunteers that include law enforcement officers, firefighters and community business leaders. STAR stands for Sports, Training, Academics and Recreation and PAL stands for Police Athletic League.

The Padres will honor Gregerson and recognize his Roberto Clemente Award nomination during an on-field pregame ceremony on Friday, Sept. 28.

"Luke is one of the first players to sign up for every Padres community event and is a positive role model for young fans," said Padres President and CEO Tom Garfinkel in a release.

Short hops

• Leila Rahimi, sideline reporter for Fox Sports San Diego, has taken a job with Fox Sports Houston. Radio broadcaster Andy Masur will fill in during this series against the D-backs, during an upcoming series in San Francisco and the season-ending road trip in Milwaukee. Ali Lucia, a reporter at WAVY-TV in Virginia, will handle sideline duties during a series against the Dodgers on Sept. 25-27. Fox Sports San Diego won't hire a full-time replacement for Rahimi until after the first of the year.

• All-Star closer Huston Street could be reinstated from the disabled list, possibly as soon as Wednesday. San Diego manager Bud Black sounded optimistic about Street's recovery from a strained right calf, an injury that landed him on the disabled list on Aug. 11. Street's arm is fine and ready to pitch, Black said. It's just a matter of Street's calf being strong enough to field his position, cover first base, etc.