Hill hopes three-hit day start of good times

Hill hopes three-hit day start of good times

SAN DIEGO -- Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston was encouraged to see second baseman Aaron Hill deliver three doubles in Monday's 6-3 win over the Padres.

Gaston hopes the performance also helps Hill's confidence as he continues to pull himself out of a persistent slump.

"When you start to believe, things start to happen -- good things happen," Gaston said. "I've never not believed in him, but when you're not swinging the bat well, sometimes you doubt yourself once in a while. Hopefully that's just going to help him be a little more positive about himself."

Hill finished 3-for-5, marking only his third three-hit game during this trying season. It also represented the first time this year that the second baseman collected three extra-base hits in a game. Hill only had one previous game with two extra-base hits, though Monday's showing was his first contest this year with at least two doubles.

In the second inning, Hill drove in two runs with a two-out double off Padres right-hander Jon Garland. Then in the sixth, Hill added another two-base hit with two outs to collect one more RBI. It was the first time since Aug. 1 of last season that Hill had a pair of RBI hits with two outs in one contest.

"It's great to contribute when other guys aren't swinging," said Hill, who entered Tuesday hitting .196 with nine homers and 24 RBIs through 50 games. "You keep playing. It's a long season. I've been feeling good and you know eventually, hopefully, they'll fall. It's one of those things where you keep going. It's a long season."