SAN DIEGO -- Chase Headley returned to the Padres' starting lineup on Saturday after not starting in the previous three games because of a mild strain of his right biceps.
The Padres used Alexi Amarista at third base in his absence but refused to move second baseman Jedd Gyorko to third base, even though he appeared in more games at third base in the Minor Leagues (223) than anywhere else by a long shot.
So why didn't manager Bud Black slide Gyorko over to third base when Headley was out? After all, he did at the beginning of last season when Headley started the year on the disabled list with a fractured thumb.
"I got multiple emails from fans about that," Black said. "I think the best answer is this; We did that a little bit last year, when against a left-handed pitcher, Cody Ransom played third and Jedd played second. Against a righty, Jedd played third and Alexi [Amarista] played second base.
"I just think moving a guy back and forth, especially an everyday player, is not the ideal situation. I think Jedd is a guy we want to keep at second base, keep him stable, keep him steady. I think Alexi's mindset is such where he's used to being moved from position to position. He fills in fine at third."
Gyorko appeared in 13 games at third base last season, with all but one coming before April 15. In those games, he had two errors.
There is a thought, internally at least, that Gyorko's arm is better suited for the right side of the infield.