Blanks again shows promise after bad start

The Sports Xchange
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After a third straight slow start in as many tours with the Padres, left fielder Kyle Blanks is on a roll that duplicates his 2009 debut.

The 6-foot-7, 270-pound Blanks hit a two-run homer Friday night in the Padres' 4-3 win over Florida at Petco Park. Blanks has hit safely in 11 of his last 15 games, batting .365 (19-for-52) with four doubles, a triple and four homers for 12 RBI and 11 runs scored.

Two years ago, as a 22-year-old midseason call-up, Blanks was hitting .150 after his first 40 at-bats. Over his last 98 at-bats, however, Blanks hit 10 homers with a .287 average.

Last season, Blanks never got untracked. He was hitting .157 with 46 strikeouts in 102 at-bats when his season abruptly ended for elbow-reconstruction surgery.

After spending the first half of this season rehabbing in the minors, Blanks returned to the Padres on July 21 and went 3-for-32 with 15 strikeouts in his first 11 games. Since then, however, Blanks has been a hot hitter.

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