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PCL notes: Gyorko focuses on switch

Padres prospect concentrating on adding second to repertoire
August 13, 2012
Padres infield prospect Jedd Gyorko spent much of July caught up in a swirl of rumors.

Gyorko was not on the trading block, but the man ahead of him in San Diego, third baseman Chase Headley, certainly was and that meant many people felt Gyorko was bound for the Majors on Aug. 1.

In the end, though, Headley remained in San Diego and Gyorko remained with Tucson.

"I think that recently, now that the trading deadline has passed, I think he's got a little bit of a letdown," Tucson manager Terry Kennedy said. "Everyone was saying he's going up, he's going up and nothing happened. So now he's got to wait.

"There will even be the question of will he go up in September, because they don't want to start the (service time) clock."

Gyorko, however, just shrugged when he was asked whether all the rumors had any effect.

"I didn't really think about it too much," he said. "You don't really have a whole lot of time to think when you play every single day. You've got enough things to worry about with the pitcher you're facing tonight, what team you're going against and how they're trying to get you out. You don't have much time to think about what's going on, especially in San Diego."

Gyorko has kept himself focused on the game at hand, and that approach has certainly had its benefits. Despite being placed on the seven-day disabled list Friday with a sore left ankle, Gyorko has been the big hitting star for Tucson this season.

"Without Gyorko, we wouldn't be where we are," Kennedy said. "He's the best hitter I see in our organization. Somebody might beat him once, maybe twice, but then he makes the adjustment. He takes his hits over (to the opposite field), he drags and runs with singles. He can go deep."

Gyorko has hit .333 with 17 home runs and 65 RBIs in 74 games with Tucson.

"It's been good so far," he said. "I've put up pretty good numbers. I really don't worry about the defense aspect when it comes to hitting. I don't really mix the two. I don't take my at-bats to the field, and I don't take my fielding into the box."

The reason defense has come into such focus this year for Gyorko is because he has split his time between his natural position of third base and now second base, as the big-league Padres have long-term needs at both positions.

"It hasn't been too bad," Gyorko said. "I played second base growing up, I played it in college a few times, so I've been familiar with it. It's kind of just going back to my roots, getting back over there again. It's kind of been fun playing second base, mixing it in with third. It keeps things interesting."

Gyorko is expected to be activated from the DL this week.

In brief

Going the distance: Omaha LHP Chris Dwyer looked sharp in his sixth career Triple-A start Saturday, earning a complete-game victory over Tucson. Dwyer allowed just two runs as he went the distance for the first time this season after six starts with the Storm Chasers and 16 with Double-A Northwest Arkansas. Dwyer, the Royals' No. 9 prospect, has gone 8-11 with a 5.55 ERA between the two clubs.

Trade partners: Round Rock RHP Greg Reynolds matched up against his old team, Colorado Springs, and the man he was traded for, 1B Chad Tracy, on Sunday afternoon. Reynolds got Tracy to fly out to left and right field in the second and fourth innings respectively. Tracy has hit .266 with 10 homers and 69 RBIs entering the game for the Sky Sox, while Reynolds has gone 9-7 with a 5.02 ERA in 22 starts for the Express.

First impression: Salt Lake RHP Barry Enright, who was just acquired in a trade between the Angels and D-backs, has looked especially sharp in his first four starts for the Bees. Enright tossed seven scoreless innings Saturday at Nashville but did not factor in the decision. In four starts with Salt Lake, Enright is 2-0 with a 2.20 ERA after he went 8-6 with a 5.87 ERA in 21 starts for Reno.

Chris Jackson is a contributor to