SAN DIEGO -- In his last ten games, Padres left-fielder Ryan Ludwick is batting .436 with four home runs and 14 RBIs.
Ludwick has a hit in each of those games. It's his sixth hit-streak of ten or more games in his career and the longest since an 11-game streak from July 4 to July 18, 2009. Ludwick is out of the lineup for Sunday's contest with the Mariners, but only because Padres manager Bud Black wants to give him some rest.
The 32-year-old said he hasn't changed anything in his approach since the end of April, when he was batting just below .200. In his own words, the biggest difference has been comfort, although he is doing a few things better now.
"I've been seeing it just as good as day one, I just think my hands are working a little bit better and [I'm] hitting the way that I've hit over my entire career," Ludwick said. "For some reason, I don't know what it was, last year and the beginning of this year it just didn't click. And it's clicking now."
Ludwick hit .251 last season, but only hit 17 home runs and drove in 69 RBIs after averaging 29.5 homers and 105 RBIs in his previous two seasons with St. Louis.
"I know he's up there in the league leaders in May in RBIs and home runs, but from the technical side, he looks to be a little bit more aggressive from the time he steps in the batter's box, he's ready to hit," Black said. "I think the main thing now is that you're seeing him not expand the zone, swinging at strikes, taking balls."
Another big component in Ludwick's recent hitting is plain luck. Ludwick had a number of would-be-hit line drives taken away in the early parts of the season. Ludwick said his luck is beginning to turn around, and pointed out his hit two games ago that just fell short of the reach of Mariners left fielder Carlos Peguero.
"A lot of people don't see every at-bat, they just look at the scoreboard, so I think from a player's standpoint, we're more worried about how we feel," Ludwick said. "We try not to worry about the result, but what goes into the result."
Black: PETCO shouldn't pysch players out
SAN DIEGO -- Through the first two games of the Padres' weekend series against the Mariners, San Diego has recorded seven hits, total.
But the low offensive output isn't just from the Mariners series. Since returning from an eight-day road trip where the team scored fewer than six runs twice, the Padres have scored four runs in four games.
With such decreased numbers since returning to PETCO Park, questions about the park's mental effect on the players sprouted back up.
"No," Padres manager Bud Black said when asked if the park was psyching anyone out. "If it is, it shouldn't. I wish I could put a finger on it. You know, I can't."
While that may be the case, the Padres' numbers are much different at home. The teams' batting average is almost 50 points higher on the road (.252) than it is at home (.203), and the Padres have batted in 56 runs in 25 home contests to 99 runs in 21 games on the road.
However, 54 of those runs on the road came during the Padres' recent eight-game road trip to Milwaukee, Colorado and Arizona. During the road trip, San Diego hit .323 (86-for-263) with an on-base percentage of .357.
"I don't know," third baseman Chase Headley said. "I think a lot of it is the confidence when you get on the road, sometimes when you get a few hits stacked together, you score some runs, it kind of snowballs. That's the only thing that I can really say."
Padres left fielder Ryan Ludwick said the discrepancy in the numbers will be there.
"Well, I think this ballpark is definitely notorious for being a little bit different than some other ballparks around the league," he said. "The splits are going to be a little bit different."
But Ludwick said they shouldn't be that different. He said he expects the numbers to even out as time progresses. Ludwick's have already.
"I do feel much more comfortable in the box now than I have," Ludwick said. "When I got over here, I was so intimidated by right-center [field] that I felt like I had to swing harder, and it's getting to the point now where I'm going to the plate and not worrying about it. It's the same game, it's just a different ballpark. See ball, hit ball.
"But I am a fly-ball hitter, I've been a fly-ball hitter my whole career so I've hit a lot of balls to the warning track here that might have been bombs other places, but you can't worry about it."
Moseley working on his changeup
SAN DIEGO -- It was during February in Spring Training, his first spring with the Padres, when pitcher Dustin Moseley decided to take advantage of a resource made available to him -- Major League career saves leader Trevor Hoffman.
Moseley, who signed a free agent deal with the Padres in December, wanted to see how Hoffman -- who retired in January after an 18-year career -- threw his changeup, a pitch that served him well in a career in which he saved 601 games.
Hoffman is currently a special assistant to Padres president and COO Tom Garfinkel. He was in Spring Training on several occasions to answer questions from pitchers.
"I asked him about it, but for him it's more of a palm ball than a circle change," Moseley said of Hoffman's primary out pitch. "I tried to throw it but I couldn't do it. Throwing it that way, you have to really be behind it. I'm really wristy when I throw."
This doesn't mean Moseley -- who is 1-6 but has a 3.40 ERA going into his start Monday against the Cardinals -- has given up on the pitch, though according to FanGraphs, he's throwing it less than he was a year ago.
Moseley is trying to change that, and on Friday at PETCO Park, he focused more on the changeup during his side session in the bullpen in advance of Monday's start.
Last season, Moseley threw his changeup 14.5 percent of the time with the Yankees. He is throwing it 11.8 percent of the time this season. Moseley has a career average of 15.7 percent when it comes to throwing the changeup.
"It used to be a pitch I could go to more," Moseley said. "My change used to be pretty good. But this year, it's coming out a little hard, too much velocity. You want that eight to 10 mph difference instead of the five to six mph difference.
"And it's a pitch that has to be thrown in the perfect spot."
Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter. Mark Thompson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.