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Wynton Bernard Enjoys Being in the Blue Jays’ System

Wynton Bernard Enjoys Being in the Blue Jays’ System

April 21, 2023

Photo credit: AP Photo/David Zalubowski

Outfielder Wynton Bernard is enjoying his time in the Toronto Blue Jays’ system. Bernard, who signed with the club in January really likes that the organization focuses on the little things.

“They’re very big on working on the little things,” explained Bernard. “John Schneider mentioned that the first day of spring training. He said doing all of the little things in baseball is big and that’s how you’ll become a championship team. Base running, situational hitting, or having your glove the right way in the outfield; all of these simple little details which are things I’ve always prided myself on they’re really strong on. I think that is helping all of us in our development.”

Bernard battled for the fourth outfield spot with the Blue Jays’ this spring before being assigned to Triple-A, “You look top to bottom and the whole organization is good,” said Bernard. “The roster is full of really good players, and I feel that’s why they’re considered a major league team. Every day you go out there and compete for a spot – that is the goal and ultimately you want to play in the big leagues.”

Currently slashing .268/.318/.415 with an OPS of .733; after 41 at-bats with Buffalo; Bernard discusses how his plate approach has changed over his 12-year pro career.

“Luckily I’ve had some really good coaches during the season and during the off-season,” stated Bernard. “One of the biggest things David Justice told me was that it’s better to go up there with a plan than to have no plan at all. In my youth, it was basically see the ball, hit the ball. Now I have a plan based on what the pitcher is throwing. If he’s a sinker guy maybe I’m looking for something up in the zone – a guy who throws a lot of changeups maybe middle up and in. Basically, it’s having a plan and sticking with it.”

Another thing Bernard prides himself on is his range in the outfield, “I try to get to as many balls as possible,” explained Bernard. “There’s nothing better than running down a ball in the gap and making a huge play for your teammates. I just try to use my speed in the outfield the best I can. I love going back on balls, I love coming in on balls, it’s really a lot of fun playing in the outfield and making a big play for your teammates.”

Getting his first taste of the big leagues last August with the Colorado Rockies, Bernard talks about his debut.

“It was awesome,” Bernard recalls. “I think walking up to the plate for the first time was the best feeling in the whole world. My whole time up there just felt like a dream. It felt like I belonged there so I’m working my hardest to get back there. That is something I hope everyone can experience. As a kid my biggest dream was to play in the major leagues, and it came true. I hope I can get back there.”

Wynton Bernard will certainly be ready if the Toronto Blue Jays’ need him this season.