PEORIA, Ariz. (AP) — Jedd Gyorko was a pleasant surprise in a mostly forgettable 2013 season for the San Diego Padres.
Gyorko not only made the team coming out of spring training, he earned the starting job at second base. He then led all National League rookies with 23 home runs and his 63 RBIs were the most on the team.
The problem was Gyorko swung at plenty of bad pitches in San Diego's 76-86 season. He struck out 123 times and drew only 33 walks in 525 plate appearances. That largely accounted for his .249 average and .301 on-base percentage.
The key this spring for the 25-year-old Morgantown, W. Va., product is inserting some patience into his fearless persona.