Jays Pitchers Aim High, Get Hammered For It

Well, it’s about as simply a lesson in Physics as a pitcher can get. If you aim high, you will get hammered regardless of whether you’re playing the Royals or the Phillies. In this case, it happened to be the Phillies and there was just no way Brett Cecil and other Jays pitchers could keep the ball down on this day. You could try to use the old “it’s a bang box” theory to explain it or the “the Phillies are loaded offensively” but I don’t buy it one bit. Shaun Marcum kept the ball down and away or inside all day and had success. Brett Cecil didn’t do any of that and got hammered for it. End of story. Today is another day and hopefully he’ll be able to find the bottom of the zone in his next start.

Maybe I’m alone in thinking this, but I am really beginning to think that this may be Aaron Hill’s worst season ever. He looks terribly mediocre defensively, is as inconsistent as you can get at the plate, and yesterday was yet another proof of this. He made 2 crucial errors that lengthened Cecil’s start at a time when the Jays had pulled within 2 runs of the Phillies, and now has an overall average of .192. So, why aren’t jays fans riding Aaron harder? Does he get a pass for the great year he had in 2009? And why is there little attention being paid to how to resolve the issues that he and Adam Lind are having at the plate? Moving them down in the order was a great start, but I still think there’s something wrong with their approach and it may begin with the hitting coach.

Sure, Jose Bautista, Vernon Wells, John Buck, and Alex Gonzalez have done well under the “new regime” and new approach to hitting the Jays have instilled, but it has devastated Aaron Hill and Adam Lind’s approaches because it robbed them of their respective game plans. I have no idea what exactly has changed for them, but I do know something has. You don’t go from hitting close to or above .300 with 30+ HRs to be around the mendozza line all season for no reason. I really think that whoever it is that is helping Aaron Hill and Adam Lind with their hitting should stop, the grab the nearest “other” coach, and let them have a go at it. Something isn’t right in the approach and I certainly hope that both have a better second half.

If and when they do fix whatever issues are ailing Hill and Lind I entirely expect this lineup to be one of the best in the AL. It has power throuhgout and has JP Arencibia (who just hit his 17th HR of the season in AAA) and Brett Wallace (14 HRs) waiting for their opportunity to join them.

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Tags: Aaron Hill Adam Lind Brett Wallace JP Arencibia

  • http://fantasybaseballhotstove.com Mark

    You are definitely not alone in your thinking of Hill. I can’t think of two hitters who have fallen harder from 2009 than those two based on their age and injury histories. Wandy Rodriguez is the only comparable player that comes to my mind, but he’s a pitcher.

  • Alex

    Jays batter aim low and succeed. Seriously, except for the 2nd half of the 2008, I can’t remember when the Jays would actually hit consistently. It’s the same story every season; strong starting pitching, and nonexistent hitting. FRUSTRATING.

  • Mat Germain

    I entirely agree with both of you and don’t see it changing until we get 1) Brett Wallace and JP Arencibia in the lineup, and 2) some speed added in (Darin Mastroianni and/or Adeiny Hechavarria). The Jays lineup, as is, is way too heavy on power, too light on average, and non-existent in steals. As for the pitching, with all of the arms the Jays have coming up through the minors, it should remain one of the strongest and youngest staffs in all of MLB. That’s 1 thing the Jays can brag about with ease, and this year’s draft only help to solidify that claim. If the Jays can get a staff as good as SF has together and improve their current offensive output slightly, they could be a force to be reckoned with.

    I would add that 2011 is shaping up to be one hell of a season for the Jays, especially when we add all of the moves the Jays will make and the FAs they may add with the huge amount of $$ they may have to spend this off season.