Return to San Diego ignites Gyorko's bat

Former Padre goes 6-for-11 with 2 HRs in weekend trip to Petco Park

Return to San Diego ignites Gyorko's bat

SAN DIEGO -- OK, all you well-mannered Cardinals fans, time to change your act.

In the next game at Busch Stadium when Jedd Gyorko approaches the plate, let him have it.

"I hope when I go back to St. Louis they boo me there, too, because it worked out pretty well,'' Gyorko said with a grin.

Gyorko, a former Padre, was a double shy of the cycle in going 3-for-5 and slugging his fourth home run in the Cardinals' 8-5 win on Sunday.

Maybe the jeers that greeted Gyorko whenever his name was announced motivated him. Then again, maybe the low-key infielder is just that, and didn't let the ribbing get to him.

But manager Mike Matheny often thinks like a big leaguer, which he was. So put him in the corner that Gyorko was out to prove something.

Gyorko's over-the-shoulder grab

"I think especially when he got the reception that he got," Matheny said. "It's pretty common in this game if you give a guy a chance to go back and play against a team that he was with, it seems like it is usually a pretty good opportunity for him to do something special, and Jedd had a real nice couple of days for us."

Nobody can give a Bronx cheer to his line from his San Diego visit: 6-for-11 with two homers, four RBIs, a triple and three runs scored.

Gyorko's diving stop

"I'm seeing the ball well and getting myself in good hitting situations," said Gyorko, who hit 23 home runs for the Padres during his 2013 rookie season. "I think the majority of my at-bats were 2-0, 3-1 counts, so for the most part, if you get in those situations, the pitcher has to come to you and give you something to hit. I was able to put some good swings on it."

And to do so against San Diego? Isn't that like showing up with a prettier girlfriend when seeing the previous one that dumped you?

"I wouldn't know about that," Gyorko said. "I'm married."

Gyorko's stand-up triple

If it took playing the team that broke up with Gyorko to get him hot, so be it.

"Honestly, I didn't know what to expect," Gyorko said about the razzing. "If they want to do their thing, then whatever."

But it's not Cardinals fans' custom to boo one of their own. Although Gyorko won't complain if they change their tradition.

Jay Paris is a contributor for MLB.com based in San Diego. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.