08/17/08 9:02 PM ET
Dykstra enjoys batting practice session
Two days after signing, first baseman displays power stroke
By Ronald P. Clark / MLB.com
Dykstra, a first baseman out of Wake Forest, took batting practice with the team before Sunday's game with the Phillies.
"It was good," Dykstra said. "Nice, beautiful day in San Diego and it felt great to get out there hitting."
Dykstra's contract signing came down to the wire on Friday as he came to a verbal agreement in the final half-hour before the 9 p.m. PT deadline. Dykstra said that he wasn't worried about not getting the deal done.
"Not really," Dykstra said. "You have until the deadline and we know that it didn't happen the first time we tried to figure out the contract. But there was really no rush to finish before nine o'clock."
Dykstra has not worked out much since being drafted as he waited out the process. His Wake Forest team did not make the postseason, so he'd been away from the game for the summer.
"It was a first," Dykstra said. "I'd been busy every summer growing up, always playing. It was really nice to get some time off. It was kind of stressful towards the end, trying to figure out what was going on. But it was really nice to hang out at home and be with my family."
Dykstra was in the last group of players to participate in batting practice and seemed a bit nervous as he tried to find his rhythm. But he did show on occasion the power that Padres general manager Kevin Towers has raved about since Dykstra was drafted.
The next step for Dykstra will be a trip to the Padres' Class A affiliate, Lake Elsinore, on Tuesday. Dykstra is looking forward to getting back to practicing, taking ground balls and hitting again.
"I tried to get back into the swing of things today," Dykstra said, "and I think it went pretty well."
Ronald P. Clark is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.