05/15/10 4:01 PM ET
Blue Jays aren't swinging for fences
By Jordan Bastian / MLB.com
Blue Jays hitting coach Dwayne Murphy wants to make it clear that his hitters are not stepping up to the plate and trying to launch long balls. He said the high power numbers are simply a product of good swings and approach.
"Everybody's kind of harping about home runs," Murphy said. "These guys aren't trying to hit home runs. They're just trying to put a good swing on the ball, and they're having good results out of it. You hear so much, 'It's home run or nothing,' but that's not what's happening.
"When you're up there looking for a certain pitch and you get it, you have an easier chance to hit it if you square it up. These guys aren't trying to hit home runs. They're just barreling it up, and it's going out of the ballpark."
Lind, Hill coming around at plate
TORONTO -- Aaron Hill and Adam Lind carried the Blue Jays' offense for much of last season, proving one of the better power combinations in the American League. Both hitters are off to slower starts this season, and hitting coach Dwayne Murphy believes it has everything to do with the opposing pitchers.
"They've been pitching those guys different, and rightfully so," Murphy said on Saturday. "These guys had great years last year. They have to make adjustments. If I'm a pitcher and last year these guys got me, I'm going to do something different. Maybe I'm starting them with fastballs where last year I was throwing breaking balls.
"I'm going to do whatever I can do to get them off-balance, and all of a sudden they're in their own heads a little and then you've got them and they're struggling. But these guys, their swings are coming. These last few games, they've had good swings."
Entering Saturday, Hill was hitting .184 with three home runs and nine RBIs over 22 games, while Lind was batting .223 with six homers and 20 RBIs across 36 contests. Both Hill and Lind homered in Friday's 16-10 win over the Rangers, and Murphy believes it is only a matter of time before they heat up even more.
"These guys, in my book, are going to be all right," Murphy said. "They're going to be fine. Their swings are there, and these are guys that are good hitters. It's not like you have to break it apart and say, 'Well, you guys have got to do this.' They just have to build their confidence.
"By the end of the season, they may not have the super power numbers they had last year, but they will have good, quality numbers by the time the season is done."
Lind contributed to Saturday's 6-0 blanking of the Rangers with an RBI single in the first inning off Scott Feldman.
Wrist sidelines red-hot Snider
TORONTO -- Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston would have loved nothing more than to keep Travis Snider and his hot bat in the lineup on Saturday against the Rangers. Unfortunately for Toronto, a sore right wrist forced Gaston to sit the young outfielder.
"[Snider] strained his wrist a little bit on a swing last night," Gaston said on Saturday morning. "Hopefully, he's going to be back [on Sunday]."
A quick return for Snider would be great news for the Blue Jays, who have benefited from his recent performance at the plate. Over his past 14 games, Snider has hit .385 with four home runs, eight doubles, 11 runs scored and 11 RBIs.
With his regular right fielder temporarily out of the lineup, Gaston moved left fielder Fred Lewis to right and gave designated hitter Adam Lind a start in left. Randy Ruiz served as DH on Saturday.
Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.