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Murphy hopes multihit game brings end to slump

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LOS ANGELES -- Indians right fielder David Murphy smirked, because he knew the question was coming. It was inevitable that the subject of his prolonged slump in the batter's box would come up, considering he had just collected three hits in a rout of the Dodgers on Tuesday night.

When Murphy's offensive woes were mentioned, he did not miss a beat.

"Was I in a slump?" Murphy deadpanned.

Not only has Murphy been in a slump, the veteran outfielder called it probably the worst multiweek skid of his nine-year Major League career. Murphy experienced a trying season a year ago with the Rangers, but he said the recent period felt worse.

Needless to say, Murphy was relieved to have contributed three hits and two RBIs in Tuesday's 10-3 win for the Tribe.

"It's a breath of fresh air," Murphy said on Tuesday. "Every one of us have gone through slumps. And when you think you've reached the limit and you're not going to go through anything worse, something comes along that tops anything you've been through.

"Praise the Lord that I had a good night. I'm just going to continue to grind and hopefully I can stay consistent and get out of this thing for good."

Prior to his three-hit showing against Los Angeles -- marking his first multihit game since June 8 -- Murphy had been mired in a 1-for-44 slump, dating back to June 13. Between June 13-21, the outfielder had a career-worst 0-for-25 drought. Then, after getting a hit in his last at-bat against the Tigers on June 21, Murphy went through an 0-for-18 spell.

At the time of his last multihit performance, Murphy was batting .291 with a .790 OPS. Through 77 games entering Wednesday, the right fielder has a .250 average to go along with five home runs, 22 extra-base hits, 40 RBIs and a .694 OPS.

Indians manager Terry Francona said Murphy is one player he does not worry too much about.

"We're thrilled he got some hits," Francona said, "but Murph's a pretty tough kid. He understands the ups and downs of a season. I don't think he was thrilled about being 2-for-whatever, but he's too good. Those things go in streaks. He'll get hot."

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

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