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Gibbons: Players not feeling pressure despite struggles

Gibbons: Players not feeling pressure despite struggles

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays are off to a less than ideal start, but manager John Gibbons doesn't see the need for a closed-door meeting with all his players to discuss the current state of affairs.

Toronto entered play on Sunday having lost four of its previous five games. That dropped the club's record to four games below .500 as the Blue Jays have not yet lived up to the offseason hype.

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Fans in the Toronto area are beginning to get restless, but Gibbons says the pressure hasn't invaded his clubhouse and the Blue Jays aren't about to panic just because they've hit a few bumps on the road.

"I don't think there's any need for that," Gibbons said of a team meeting. "They know what's at stake. They're all giving it their best, we just haven't performed the way we hoped. That doesn't mean we're going to, and to be honest, we've run into some good pitching along the way, too."

The offense has been a particular area of concern through the first three weeks despite the fact it was supposed to be a major strength. Toronto prepared to face New York with a lineup that ranked 10th in the American League with 64 runs scored.

Toronto has scored three runs or less in 11 of its 18 games. The problem in a lot of cases has been an overly aggressive team that is often seen swinging at the first pitch or two and making quick outs.

That's something that will need to change if the Blue Jays want to stop pressing at the plate and settle into any type of groove.

"There have been times when we've been over-aggressive," Gibbons admitted. "The key is, it's one thing to be aggressive, but make sure it's a pitch you want to hit. Go chasing out of the zone early in the count, that's what will get you in trouble. If it's something you like, something you're looking for, get after it."

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. Evan Peaslee is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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