BALTIMORE -- Colby Rasmus was held out of the Blue Jays starting lineup on Saturday night as the club looked to give him a mental and physical break, but ended up entering in the third inning when Jose Bautista was removed from the game.
Rasmus has managed to record just one hit in his past eight games while dealing with a lingering groin injury. He was given the day off on Saturday night, and likely will receive another break on Sunday before the club travels to New York for the start of a three-game series.
"We did the same thing back in June, gave him a couple of days down to kind of get his legs back underneath him, gave him a little bit of a breather," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said. "Given the time he has come back from the groin issue, he's been grinding, he has been working on a number of things in the cage, in BP, and yet he still hasn't found his stroke.
"I think we both agreed that a couple of days of taking a breather and then be ready to go when we get into New York."
Rasmus' break earlier in the year was designed to help overhaul his mechanics at the plate. When he eventually returned, the native of Savannah, Ga., had altered his approach by moving up in the batter's box and closer to the plate.
That type of drastic change isn't expected to take place this time around, but the hope is that a mental break will help clear Rasmus' head and also enable him to completely get over the previous injury woes. Teams have recently been attacking Rasmus with fastballs up and in, and he'll need to make the counter adjustment to get back on track.
"As we know, when seven o'clock rolls around is when it matters most, and they've had some individual problems keeping consistent swings, keeping a consistent approach that would lead to a steady, productive player," Farrell said of Rasmus and second baseman Kelly Johnson, who also has been struggling.
"As we've seen, both have been able to do at various times throughout the course of this year. We need both of them for us to have a balanced attack, and a balanced lineup, and production up and down the lineup, but right now feel like it's best for Colby to take that breather."
Rasmus is hitting .233 with 20 homers and 66 RBIs in 118 games this season. He also has a .726 OPS and 44 extra-base hits.