7/19/2013 8:45 P.M. ET
Headley looks to improve at new spot in lineup
By Chad Thornburg / MLB.com
ST. LOUIS -- Chase Headley found himself in unfamiliar territory Friday in St. Louis, as the Padres' third baseman was slotted at the second spot in the lineup for the first time since June 2011.
In 23 career games batting second prior to Friday, he was 15-for-88 with six doubles, five RBIs and a homer. Headley's current .229 average has him on pace for his worst season at the plate since he batted .222 in his rookie year.
"I don't really worry about where I hit. I'm going to try to do the same things that I always do," Headley said. "If I get going, is that what made me get going? I don't know. It just is what it is. And I'll hit when they tell me to hit."
Headley said he identified a few "very, very minute" mechanical things with his swing to keep an eye on going forward, but he had hopes of finding something more significant.
"I wish I could look and see something bigger, because then I could be like, 'Hey, there it is. Let's fix this and get going,'" Headley said. "You just have to battle through the tough times, and hopefully the numbers will take care of themselves."
Padres manager Bud Black said Headley's patience at the plate, which could help give leadoff hitter Everth Cabrera more opportunities to build on his National League-best 34 stolen bases, was also a factor in the decision. Black added that he might move Headley back in the lineup against a left-handed pitcher to take advantage of Chris Denorfia's .283 average and .348 on-base percentage against lefties.
Despite not playing, Cabrera relishes All-Star experience
ST. LOUIS -- Everth Cabrera may not have had an opportunity to play in his first All-Star Game, but the Padres shortstop is banking on a return trip to accomplish that goal.
"That's the motivator for me," Cabrera said. "I didn't play this year, but I want to be there as the starting shortstop next year. I've got to keep working hard. I want to be there again."
Cabrera is having the best season of his short big league career, batting .291 and leading the National League in stolen bases with 34. He is second in the NL only to the Cardinals' Pete Kozma in fielding percentage at .984.
Cabrera, 26, said he savored the opportunity to learn from some of the game's best players in New York this week.
"It's a great moment to be out there, see those guys, like Carlos Beltran, Yadier Molina, Marco Scutaro, Buster Posey, guys like that," Cabrera said. "They told me a lot of stuff to be a better player and better person."
Injury updates: Forsythe 'good to go'
ST. LOUIS -- The All-Star break provided some much needed rest for ailing Padres players.
Logan Forsythe twisted his knee last Saturday against the Giants, but with rest and some anti-inflammatory medication, he said Friday that his knee is "good to go" without restrictions.
"I've dealt with knees and the feet plenty of times," Forsythe said. "It's just one of those things, as much as you stay on top of it, it's kind of frustrating when it creeps back up, but I think it's OK."
• Left fielder Kyle Blanks is progressing toward a return from the disabled list as he recovers from tendonitis in his left Achillies tendon. Although he hasn't resumed full activity, Blanks said orthotics for his shoe has been a big boost to his rehab.
"Still a work in progress, but I definitely feel like I'm moving in the right direction," Blanks said. "I already see improvements in just the way I feel and how my body feels. I think just from there, it's a matter of doing everything [the trainers] let me do and seeing how it feels."
• While a ways away from returning to the field, Clayton Richard underwent successful left shoulder surgery July 15 and will likely begin a throwing program in about three months, according to manager Bud Black.
• Black announced Friday that Andrew Cashner will start Monday in Milwaukee, with Jason Marquis taking the mound Wednesday and Edinson Volquez following on Thursday. Black said he has made a decision on a Tuesday starter, but he will hold off the announcement until he informs the player first.
• The All-Star break came at a perfect time for Joe Thatcher and his wife Katlyn, as they welcomed their first child Tuesday night, a baby boy named Jackson Joseph Thatcher.
"Everybody says it's a life changer," Thatcher said. "You can't really grasp it until it happens to you and you hold your baby in your arms. It just puts a whole different perspective on life itself and not baseball."
Chad Thornburg is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.