Patterson showing some unlikely pop

Patterson showing some unlikely pop

Patterson showing some unlikely pop
PEORIA, Ariz. -- When the Padres acquired infielder/outfielder Eric Patterson from the Red Sox as the player to be named later in the Adrian Gonzalez deal, San Diego general manager Jed Hoyer said he considered Patterson an ideal National League player.

It's beginning to look like Patterson, who spent time with the A's and Red Sox, has not forgotten his roots in the hitter-friendly American League.

Patterson, who figures to make the team as a utility man, has certainly shown some pop in his bat this spring -- with nine extra-base hits, including seven doubles.

Entering play Sunday, Patterson was tied with four other players for the most doubles in the National League.

All of this is coming from a player who enters 2011 with 18 doubles in 419 Major League at-bats.

"It's just a product of a shorter swing than I've had in the past," Patterson said on Sunday. "In the past, my swing has been long, and my front foot was getting down late. It made hitting tough.

"Right now, I'm trying to be shorter to the ball, and I've been getting a lot more barrel."