Farrell seeks high on-base percentage hitter

Farrell seeks high on-base percentage hitter

TORONTO -- Starting pitching is the Blue Jays' biggest need heading into the offseason, a point manager John Farrell continues to reiterate.

But the skipper would also like some help on the offensive end, too. Farrell is interested in a high-average, line-drive type hitter who doesn't strike out a lot.

He believes the team is adequate in terms of power, but getting another hitter that hits for more contact and has a high on-base percentage -- one of the stats Farrell values most -- would be ideal.

"I think any time you can lengthen out a lineup and upgrade, that's a plus," Farrell said. "Home runs, we have a number of guys that can drive the ball out of the ballpark."

The Blue Jays had the second-lowest on-base percentage in the American League, behind only the Mariners, and the club's .246 average entering play Tuesday was the fourth lowest mark in the AL.

Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Bautista are the only two regulars that have an on-base percentage above .330 -- league average was .321 last season -- and three of the Blue Jays' starting players, catcher J.P. Arencibia, center fielder Colby Rasmus and shortstop Yunel Escobar, are below the .300 mark.