If the Padres are considering Andrew Cashner for the starting rotation when he might still be a week away from appearing in a game, might not Tim Stauffer also be a candidate?

Stauffer, whose 2012 season was limited to one start and officially ended last Aug. 31 with surgery to repair the flexor tendon in his right elbow, worked a scoreless inning in his first exhibition outing Thursday and is scheduled to pitch another inning Sunday.

“It’s too early to say where Tim fits,” Padres manager Bud Black said Saturday. “In time, there is a starting pitcher there. He could start later this spring, maybe in three weeks.

“But there are no expectations one way or another right now.”

In 2011, Stauffer went 9-12 with a 3.73 earned run average in 31 starts. He was scheduled to be the Padres Opening Game starter for a second straight season last spring. But the elbow issues arose during the last week of spring training.