Lind laments Blue Jays' mental mistakes

Lind laments Blue Jays' mental mistakes

Lind laments Blue Jays' mental mistakes
TORONTO -- Injuries aren't the only thing that set the Blue Jays back this season, according to first baseman Adam Lind.

The 29-year-old Lind, who has been a member of the Blue Jays since making his Major League debut in 2006, believes that smarter play will go a long way toward improving the club.

"We need to mature as a team, both players and staff," Lind said. "We need more discipline, and we need to be much smarter as a team."

"This year was a great learning process for us, and I think it will make us better next year."

The Blue Jays were hovering around .500 for much of the first half and holding their own in the competitive American League East before falling out of contention shortly after the All-Star break.

The volume of injuries the club endured, which is more than a convenient excuse, played a large role in the dropoff. Throughout the season, Toronto lost closer Sergio Santos, starters Drew Hutchison and Kyle Drabek and three-time All-Star Jose Bautista to season-ending surgeries.

But Lind still believes that the club could have done a better job if it cleaned up its play on the field.

"We are the ones who make the decisions, and we need to know when to pull back the reins and step on the pedal," Lind said. "We have a lot of young guys. Some guys were learning in the Minor Leagues, where mistakes are more accepted, and it's a learning process down there. When you get here, you can't make mistakes like that, and that's just not the young guys. I think our whole team has had moments where we scratch our head after the game, like, 'What was I thinking?'

"That's what good teams do -- they don't beat themselves, and a lot of the times, the difference between a playoff team and a team that is two or three out from the playoffs is unforced errors."

Lind, who was optioned and placed on waivers earlier in the season, has one more guaranteed year left on his contract, which includes club options for 2014-16.

In 88 games entering Friday, Lind was batting .243 with 10 homers, 40 RBIs and a .697 on-base plus slugging percentage.