SAN DIEGO -- The Dodgers aren't ready to pull the plug on struggling leadoff hitter Dee Gordon.
"We're going to be patient," general manager Ned Colletti said of his shortstop, who is hitting .212 entering Thursday night's game with 28 strikeouts, seven walks and a .248 on-base percentage.
"We need him to relax and play like he can. We've asked him to take on a lot in a short time. We knew there would be a learning curve and there is. Years ago, people were on Matt Kemp and patience paid off there. His work ethic has been strong. He's never shied away from instruction or work. If he had, we'd be having a different conversation."
In addition to utility man Justin Sellers on the big league club, the Dodgers have journeyman Luis Cruz now starting at Triple-A Albuquerque. Colletti said he is not aggressively seeking to acquire a shortstop via trade.
"Not at this time," he said.
Gordon is batting .156 against left-handed pitching and did not start Wednesday against Padres left-hander Clayton Richard, but was back atop the lineup Thursday night against right-hander Edinson Volquez.
Instead of playing Wednesday, Gordon went through a remedial hitting drill with manager Don Mattingly and hitting coach Dave Hansen, hitting off a tee in the batting cage on the field. Mattingly said he still considers Gordon his leadoff hitter, but might move him down to the eighth spot.
"That's Dee's spot," he said of leadoff. "In the same breath, a couple of games down there might relax him and get him going. It's a thought, but I'm not ready to do it yet."