Sunday, May 3, 2009

Snider not just a one trick pony

21 year old rookie Travis Snider is a stud prospect getting his feet wet at the major league level. He is hailed for having prodigious power that will make him a big threat in the middle of the Blue Jays order for years to come. However, Toronto is not just getting a one dimensional player, because his defense is very good also.

No better example of his range and deceptive speed came Saturday against the Orioles. Snider made a fabulous throw to gun down a runner at 3rd base, slid to make an exceptional grab on a blooper that seemed destined to fall for a base hit, and topped it all off with a terrific leaping catch to rob extra bases. The former first round pick is an upgrade in left over the previous incumbent Adam Lind, so the Jays will be able to save more runs this year having the stocky Snider patrolling left field.

Though he is scuffling right now at the plate, Travis will come around in time to be a phenomenal hitter. The added bonus is his speed and his glove, which is oftentimes overlooked. That might not be the case for much longer.

Hill atones for error; wins it with walk off

No one could have felt worse than Aaron Hill after his costly error in the top half of the 10th inning led to the go ahead Orioles run. So what did he do to make up for it? What he's been doing all year, coming up clutch!

With the Jays down 4-3, Hill led off the bottom half of the 10th frame. Surely using the fielding gaffe as motivation, Toronto's 2nd baseman drilled a no doubter solo home run to even the score. What a humongous bomb!

But the 2003 first round pick wasn't done there. In the 11th, with Rod Barajas in scoring position, Hill drove him in with a walk off base rap, marking the 4th walk off victory of the season for Toronto. Most impressive was the timing of the two hits. Hill had gone 0 for 4 at the dish until extra innings, but when the chips were down, he was there to lift the Jays to the win.

After his 2008 campaign was halted short in May due to effects of a concussion, how fitting that Aaron Hill has to be considered comeback player of the year for his brilliant perseverance and performance. With more heroics like Saturday's victory against Baltimore, Hill might creep his name in discussion for a far bigger award: MVP