Indians not concerned with Swisher's slump
DETROIT -- There is no denying that Nick Swisher headed into Sunday's game mired in a brutal slump. When watching Swisher's at-bats, Indians hitting coach Ty Van Burkleo does not see a hitter who has suddenly become a mechanical mess at the plate.
That is why Van Burkleo is confident Swisher will break free from his woes soon enough.
"He'll get out of it. That'll change," Van Burkleo said on Sunday morning. "He's stayed positive. He's been through slumps before. There's no panic in there. It just gets frustrating when you're not getting hits and you want to contribute, and it's not working out for you. But the swing is fine. He's looked good.
"You just grind it out and weather the storm. It's like a circle. It'll come all the way back."
Swisher entered Sunday's contest with the Tigers stuck in an 0-for-24 spell in the batter's box, marking the second-longest hitless drought of his career. He went 28 at-bats without a hit from Sept. 2-9 last season with the Yankees. Over his past dozen games, Swisher had posted just a .091 (4-for-44) average, dropping his season average to .239 from .280 over that span.
After two more hitless at-bats in Sunday's finale, Swisher snapped out of his skid with a sixth-inning single to left field off lefty Jose Alvarez.
Indians manager Terry Francona agreed with Van Burkleo's assessment of Swisher's swing, adding that the first baseman has offered at pitches he does not typically chase when he is going well. There is also the element of luck, which simply has not gone Swisher's way of late. There have been a handful of times in the past few games when Swisher has made hard contact with nothing to show for it.
"I think it's human nature, sometimes, for guys to try to do too much," Francona said. "Maybe it's pitch selection. Maybe you're overdoing it a little bit. I think mechanically he's in pretty good shape. He's pretty solid mechanically always. He may say he feels a little off with his hands or something, but he's got pretty sound mechanics from both sides of the plate.
"And guys that grind out at-bats like he does, they have a way of, when you see enough pitches, kind of getting yourself comfortable, even when you're not."