Morneau finding stride amidst Canadian homecoming

Morneau finding stride amidst Canadian homecoming

Morneau finding stride amidst Canadian homecoming

TORONTO -- Justin Morneau has been swinging a hot bat recently, and it's come just in time for the Canada native's homecoming against the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre.

Morneau, a New Westminster, British Columbia native, has seen some of his power return, as he's hitting .269 with four homers and 12 RBIs over his last 14 games. Morneau only had two homers through his first 62 games of the season.

"My swing is starting to feel more like my swing," Morneau said. "I'm starting to feel a lot more comfortable at the plate. I'm a believer in keep working hard and good things will happen -- hopefully that's the case."

Friday marked the first game in Canada for Morneau since the Twins faced the Blue Jays to open the 2011 season, as he missed the last three games of the season last year in Toronto. Morneau entered the series just a career .207 hitter at Rogers Centre, but he does have six homers in 23 games there.

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire has been happy with Morneau's power recently, as his extra work with hitting coach Tom Brunansky has been paying off. Morneau crushed two homers against the Yankees on Thursday to mark his first multi-homer game since Sept. 9, 2012.

"He's been working at it, and the ball is starting to fly over the fence now," Gardenhire said. "So that's important with [Josh] Willingham out. Right now, we need guys to step up, and Morneau is doing that."

Rhett Bollinger is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Bollinger Beat, and follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.