Johnson: So far, so good for Blue Jays
Second baseman likes what he sees from his ball club
It was a real good first month of the season for us, and the starting pitching in particular was phenomenal. There is always room for improvement -- our offense could step it up by being more consistent and productive -- but, really, it was a great month. We keep improving, and as long as we keep getting better, it will be a really good season.
I mentioned our starting pitching, and some of the numbers they have put up so far have been off the charts. They have been really good one-through-five, going out there and competing and give us their A-game. They have good stuff and they throw strikes. I hope they keep it up.
Ricky Romero heads our rotation, but we really have had contributions from all of our starters. Coming into this season I thought one of the big keys to our having success would be the depth in our starting rotation. I think so far they have exceeded everybody's expectations with the way they have performed.
We have also gotten a lot of contributions from some of the younger players on our roster. Brett Lawrie has played every single game so far, and he brings more energy to a club than anybody I have ever played with. He is a great all-around player. Other young guys who have been key so far are Henderson Alvarez and Kyle Drabek in the rotation and Luis Perez in the bullpen. He has been a big surprise, and I know there are not a lot of left-handed hitters eager to dig in against him. We have a lot of young guys on this team, and so many of them have brought a lot of energy to the field. Nobody is sulking or keeping their head down. Everybody keeps playing and grinding it out. We have all been on the same page in that regard.
One of the guys on our club who does not fall into the "young player" category is Omar Vizquel, and I can say that we have really been blessed to have him here. He is a guy who makes you better just by watching him, and he is there so that we can bounce thoughts off of him. I watch him work, I watch him practice and I watch the way he carries himself. He has been huge for us and huge for everybody on our roster.
As for our club's offense so far, we have had some good offensive production. On any given night we have had guys step up and contribute and drive in big runs. We have had walk-off homers and we have had guys like Edwin Encarnacion have a huge first month of the year. Guys have gotten on base and guys have driven them in. So even though our overall numbers might not stand out, we have had a good amount of timely hitting. Not everybody in our lineup has to hit .300 to have a productive offense.
Veteran second baseman and leadoff hitter Kelly Johnson has been one of the Blue Jays' (16-14) top offensive performers so far, hitting .250 with six homers, 14 RBIs and 18 walks.
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