Indians outfielder Michael Bourn hopes to rebound
After leaving Atlanta to sign a $48 million, four-year deal with Cleveland, Bourne hit .263 with six homers, 50 RBIs and 23 steals -- his fewest since 2007. He injured his right index finger while sliding headfirst into first base and hurt his left hamstring on Sept. 29 while trying to steal second, an injury that needed offseason surgery.
"I'm just going to try to hope to stay healthy, number one. I feel like that's always the key to everything," Bourn said. "I don't have one thing that I'm trying to just specifically do. I'm just trying to always evolve my whole game."
Indians manager Terry Francona believes the 31-year-old outfielder will be more comfortable in his second season, both with the American League and with his teammates.
"I thought he was relaxed last year, but I think it gets better when you know your surroundings," Francona said. "Unless you're just miserable, I think it has to get better. And I think any time you're getting reacquainted as opposed to introducing yourself, you're going to be more relaxed."
For Cleveland to make another run at the playoffs, it will need Bourn to get on base often.
"I've been doing it for the last six, seven years, so I'm not really worried about being pressured by doing it," he said.
Bourn contends that he simply needs to stay the course.
"Sometimes ... ain't really nothing different you need to do. You might have had bad breaks, that might have just been what it was," Bourn said. "You've got to continue to grind, continue to keep your confidence and just continue to play baseball. I've been able to continue to learn from the leadoff spot and be a good leadoff hitter, so I'm going to try to continue to improve on it, get better at it and try to lead this team to the playoffs."
Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press
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