TORONTO -- For the first time since returning from a lower back injury on June 4, Adam Lind started his second consecutive game at first base on Sunday afternoon.
Lind had previously been alternating between first and the designated hitter spot. That plan of attack helped ease Lind's transition back to the Major Leagues after missing 24 games with tightness in his lower back.
The Blue Jays now feel that Lind has progressed enough to take on an increased workload. The series finale against Boston was considered an ideal time to test that theory, because the club has an off-day on Monday.
"He has been feeling very well coming out of games at first base," manager John Farrell said. "Tomorrow being an off-day [helps], but first and foremost, Adam has felt fine physically."
Lind's presence at first meant Edwin Encarnacion received another start at designated hitter. Juan Rivera was back on the bench, because Farrell believes the veteran isn't as effective at the plate when he's not being used in the field.
Rivera is batting .304 (24-for-79) as a first baseman compared to just .230 (17-for-74) as a DH.
"For the time Juan was playing first base, he was swinging the bat well," Farrell said. "I know he feels more comfortable at the plate when he is playing a position defensively, because he is staying in the full flow of the game.
"This isn't to say that Lind is going to run out the next 35 games at first base. Juan is still going to get his games, but ... I thought [Sunday] was the first opportunity to go back-to-back games with Adam."