Following today’s 9-0 speedball drubbing at the hands of Mark Buerhle and the Marlins of Miami, the Toronto Blue Jays recalled first baseman Adam Lind from Triple A Las Vegas, while activating Ben Francisco and demoting Mike McCoy and David Cooper back to the Minor Leagues. Sergio Santos has been placed on the 60 day Disabled List to make room for Lind’s return to the 40 man after clearing waivers early this month.
Over 138 plate appearances for the Blue Jays Minor League affiliate in Triple A, Lind put up a rather astounding .476 wOBA, getting on base more than 45% of the time while slugging a mean .658.
Those are gawdy numbers, no doubt. And it’s certainly better that he put up those kind of results than not putting up those kind of results, but Lind’s problems have never been about not being able to feast off of lesser pitching. It’s been about swinging and missing or making bad contact off of breaking pitches and against left handed pitching.
So forget for a second that the pitchers he hit against at the Triple A level were lesser than they are at the Major League level. And forget that hitting in Las Vegas is supposedly easier than anywhere else on the planet. What makes his numbers lack meaning when talking about his return to the Major League level is the fact that approaches in the Pacific Coast League aren’t the same as approaches in the American League.
Pitchers aren’t so concerned with pitching Adam Lind the types of pitches that get him out. They’re concerned with working on pieces of their repertoire that are going to get them to the big leagues faster. Certainly, it would be better for opposing pitchers to do well against Lind than not well, but their main focus is to do what the pitching coach at the behest of the organization wants.
So, while it’s nice to quote Triple A numbers and suggest that Lind is ready for a return, the truth of the matter could be quite different. To quote fence sitters and laissez faire endorsers, we’ll have to wait and see, but my money is on seeing the same Lind that we’ve seen for the last two years, and not the Lind who won a Silver Slugger Award more than two years ago.
Oh, and the Blue Jays finish their interleague schedule with a 9-9 record.