Everth swinging hot bat after sluggish start

Everth swinging hot bat after sluggish start

Everth swinging hot bat after sluggish start
SEATTLE -- After going hitless in his first 19 at-bats after a promotion last month from Triple-A Tucson, shortstop Everth Cabrera has become one tough out for the Padres.

Entering Thursday's game against the Mariners, Cabrera is hitting .359 (23-for-64) since collecting two hits in his last two at-bats in a game against the Cardinals on May 23.

So what's changed? Hitting coach Phil Plantier has noticed a few things.

"Most young players when they get here, even though he's been here before, they're trying a little too hard to do too much," Plantier said. "But after Everth got that first hit ... I think it allowed him to relax."

Cabrera has seven multi-hit games in this 19-game stretch since that game in St. Louis. Two of the multi-hit games have occurred in the first five games of this nine-game road trip.

"He's got a tremendous work ethic and his pitch selection has been better," Plantier said. "He's doing a good job of using the whole field. I see someone who is getting a better understanding of the strike zone."

Cabrera has stolen eight bases since May 23 and taken eight walks. Since rejoining the Padres, he has hit two home runs and has eight doubles.

That 0-for-19 stretch seems like an eternity ago, said Padres manager Bud Black.

"Even then, I don't think his at-bats were horrible," Black said. "He just didn't have anything to show for it."