Gyorko working to get back in the swing of things

Second baseman emphasizing mechanics during extra morning sessions

Gyorko working to get back in the swing of things

PEORIA, Ariz. -- Shirt soaked in sweat, hands still wrapped in batting gloves, Jedd Gyorko allowed himself a moment to rest Monday morning, dropping down into a chair in front of his clubhouse locker.

It wasn't even 8 a.m., but the Padres second baseman had already gotten in an extensive workout in the covered hitting area, working with hitting coaches Mark Kotsay and Alonzo Powell on his swing.

"The cage and the BP work are good," Gyorko said. "Now, I've just got to find a way to take it into the games."

So far, that hasn't happened nearly enough this spring, though after striking out in 16 of his first 32 at-bats, Gyorko had three hits against the White Sox in a 10-4 victory on Monday, his best performance in Cactus League play. 

Outlook: Gyorko, 2B, SD

A National League scout said recently that Gyorko's front hip is coming up early in his setup, causing his swing to be longer and slower, and that he might not be picking up pitches as well as he has in the past.

"It's going to be ugly at times," he said.

Gyorko is the first to admit his struggles haven't been fun to go through, which is why he's been putting in extra time each morning before drills to fix his swing.

One of the elements of Gyorko's setup that he's worked with Kotsay and Powell on since he arrived in Peoria last month is trying to keep his hips closed or aligned more. It doesn't always happen, and when it doesn't, it gets him in trouble.

"I know they've worked on a number of things, things that are going to help in the long term. But there are no quick fixes in this game. You got to work at it," said Padres manager Bud Black. "We have got a number of guys that are working on a few things that [hopefully] in two weeks' time things will smooth out and we'll see results.

"But if you've been in this game long enough, you know that Spring Training results can be misleading."

For now, Gyorko is convinced that keeping a level head and putting in the time in the cage, listening to Kotsay and Powell, will help get him where he needs to be.

"I think we're heading in the right direction," Gyorko said. "You've got to stay positive in this game. It's better to get it right now than when the season starts."

Corey Brock is a reporter for Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.