SD@MIA: Gyorko grounds an RBI single to plate Alonso

MIAMI -- Jedd Gyorko might have been frustrated and flustered when he started the season hitless in his first 11 at-bats, but he wasn't altogether surprised.

"Throughout my professional career this has happened before," Gyorko said. "It's something that I am trying to break. I've been a slow starter. It's kind of a pattern I've developed. It isn't something I look forward to, but at the same time, I know it's a long season with plenty of time left."

After making an out in his first at-bat in Friday's loss to the Marlins, Gyorko had his first two hits of the season, including a sixth-inning RBI single -- his first RBI of the young season.

Before that, Gyorko was 0-for-11 with six strikeouts.

"I've had some bad at-bats," he said. "I was able to get a couple of walks in there, but those strikeouts weren't good."

Last April, Gyorko's first full month in the big leagues, he hit .247. He then hit .303 in May followed by a .325 clip in June. In 2011, the season he hit a combined .333/.400/.552 between Class A Lake Elsinore and Double-A San Antonio, he struggled early.

"I think I started that year 0-for-12," Gyorko said.

In the 2012 season, when he hit a combined 30 home runs and drove in 111 runs between San Antonio and Triple-A Tucson, Gyorko also started slow.

He admitted Saturday that he's much better equipped to handle offensive struggles now than when he was in the Minor Leagues.

"The older you get, you realize how long of a season it is and you have to keep going and keep building," Gyorko said.

Ross pushed back a day in Padres' rotation

LAD@SD: Black on Ross' outing, denied challenge

MIAMI -- The Padres have made a slight change to their rotation for their upcoming series in Cleveland.

Left-hander Robbie Erlin will pitch in the series opener Monday, with Tyson Ross -- who was originally to start then -- getting pushed back to Tuesday.

Ross is coming off a start Wednesday against the Dodgers in which he threw 100 pitches in five innings -- 54 in the first two innings. Because Thursday was an off-day, Ross will now go on his sixth day and not his normal fifth day.

"Tyson had those first two innings against the Dodgers -- tough and hard innings -- where he had to work awfully hard," said Padres manager Bud Black. "I think anytime you can give a guy an extra day's rest, especially early in the year, I think it's advantageous."

Ross had a longer throwing session before Saturday's game against the Marlins under the watchful eye of Padres pitching coach Darren Balsley.

"They worked on a couple of things," Black said.

The decision to bump Ross also allowed Black to split the two lefties in his rotation, Erlin and Eric Stults, who will get the start on Wednesday.

"I don't want to say they're similar, but they both do a lot of things that could be comparable. It's a good thing to split them up, with Tyson in the middle," Black said.

The Padres like the idea of having two left-handed pitchers facing the Indians, who have a handful of left-handed hitters, like Jason Kipnis, David Murphy, Nyjer Morgan and Michael Brantley, in addition to several switch-hitters.

Kelly's first live BP session put on hold

Top Prospects: Casey Kelly, RHP, Padres

MIAMI -- Pitcher Casey Kelly, one year and three days removed from Tommy John surgery, was scheduled to throw to live hitters on Saturday in extended spring training in Arizona.

But Kelly's session was put on hold when he said his elbow was a little sore. He will likely be reevaluated on Monday, and if he's cleared, he could proceed with his rehabilitation.

Kelly said by text message that he hopes it's nothing more than inflammation.

San Diego manager Bud Black said that Kelly's soreness was located in the back of the elbow and not the ulnar collateral ligament, which was repaired April 2, 2013.

Kelly's recovery and rehabilitation to this point had gone by without much of a hiccup, and there was a good chance that he could have been pitching for a Minor League affiliate by the end of the month.

That could still occur if the soreness in the elbow subsides and he's able to resume his rehab protocol.

Last month, pitcher Joe Wieland, working his way back from Tommy John surgery in July 2012, had soreness in the back of his elbow, specifically the triceps. It was a recurring issue during his rehab. He eventually had minor elbow surgery to remove a piece of scar tissue that had caused him soreness.

Short hops

• Outfielder Cameron Maybin, who ruptured his left biceps tendon on March 2, played in an extended spring training game on Saturday in Arizona. Maybin had three at-bats and two walks. "He came out of it fine," said Padres manager Bud Black. Maybin will remain in Arizona, getting more at-bats in game situations until the team deems him ready to move ahead with his rehabilitation.