Morneau feels swing is clicking as power numbers rise
CHICAGO -- Justin Morneau revealed a tidbit of information this weekend that could either boost his trade value or help the Twins for the remainder of the year.
The 32-year-old former Most Valuable Player, signed through 2013, said he doesn't know if he's been placed on or cleared waivers, but since just before the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline, Morneau believes his swing has been clicking.
"Whether that had anything to do with it or not, I have no idea," he said of any potential relief from the Deadline passing quietly. "And I have no idea if I've been put through waivers or claimed on waivers or whatever it is, so that's still a possibility. But that's out of my control. If that happens, I'll deal with it. But right now, I'm just enjoying playing the game. The swing feels like my swing. I'm not going to say it feels good or whatever it is, but at least it feels like my swing when I go up there, and that's something I've been searching for for a long time."
It's shown at the plate. Since July 30 -- a span of 50 plate appearances -- his power numbers have increased. He's hit two doubles, five homers and driven in 11 runs with a .625 slugging percentage. In the previous 96 games, he had eight homers and 53 RBIs, with just a .396 slugging percentage.
"I just felt like I needed to use my hands a little better, and somehow it just felt right," Morneau said. "You try to be consistent with it and repeat it, and that's what makes the game difficult and fun, but when it comes and it feels good, that's a good feeling."
Teams like the Rays, Orioles, Blue Jays and Indians have all shown interest in Morneau, according to a report in the Boston Globe. He's making $14 million in the final year of his contract.
"I don't think a hot streak or a cold streak will affect that too much," Morneau said of his trade value. "If there's a team that feels like I can contribute, and it's worth giving up something, then it'll happen. If not, I'm happy here."