Toronto Blue Jays

Toronto Blue Jays

Player News - Blue Jays

Date: Team: Pos:

Michael Saunders underwent successful surgery on Friday to remove 60% of the meniscus in his left knee and is expected to be sidelined for 4-to-6 weeks.

Initially, the team feared he'd be sidelined until around the All-Star break, though the tear wasn't as bad as they had feared and they were able to get by simply trimming the meniscus. With a return set around mid-April, the Jays are no longer forced to scrounge up a suitable replacement and will roll with in-house options to cover left field until Saunders is recovered.
Feb 27 - 7:09 PM

Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos said Friday that Johan Santana (shoulder, Achilles) is "highly unlikely" to be ready by Opening Day.

Santana hasn't pitched in the majors since 2012, as he missed 2013 while recovering from a second major shoulder surgery and 2014 after blowing out his Achilles. He had a minor setback with his shoulder earlier this offseason, but delaying his start to 2015 likely is just so he can build up some stamina. The Blue Jays are viewing Santana as a starter, and he could be part of the rotation at some point in April if all goes well. The lefty has an opt-out clause in his contract on April 28 and will make $2.5 million plus incentives when on the big league roster.
Feb 27 - 11:04 AM

Gregor Chisholm of MLB.com writes that Kevin Pillar could be the "most likely candidate" to start in left field following the injury to Michael Saunders (knee).

He'll compete with Ezequiel Carrera, Chris Dickerson and possibly even infielder Danny Valencia, who has never played the outfield at the major league level. There's also Andy Dirks, but he's likely to begin the season at extended spring training after being limited to 14 rehab games in 2014 following back surgery. Pillar is a pretty underwhelming option, which is why there's probably a good chance the Jays find a solution outside the organization. General manager Alex Anthopoulos said he began making calls on Wednesday to teams with outfield depth in order to gauge trade possibilities.
Feb 26 - 7:12 PM

Blue Jays signed LHP Johan Santana to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

He'll make a base salary of $2.5 million if in the majors. Santana last pitched in the majors in 2012 before undergoing a second major shoulder surgery. He then had his comeback attempt last season sabotaged by a torn Achilles. The veteran left-hander experienced shoulder soreness while pitching in winter ball last month, but he didn't have any structural damage and the Jays decided to take a shot on him. Slated to turn 36 next month, Santana is obviously a long shot but is worth a gamble on a minor league deal. He'll compete for the final spot in Toronto's rotation.
Feb 26 - 6:06 PM

Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said Thursday that Danny Valencia will see some time in left field this spring.

Toronto is scrambling all of its internal options to replace Michael Saunders, who was expected to open the 2015 season as the Blue Jays' starting left fielder but suffered a torn meniscus Wednesday when he stepped on an underground sprinkler. Saunders is expected to miss the entire first half. Valencia has never played the outfield at the major league level and is not a good bet to win the job outright, but he could see a bit of action there against left-handed starters if the Jays don't add anybody.
Feb 26 - 1:31 PM

Andy Dirks (back) is expected to begin baseball-related activities in 7-10 days.

Dirks is on the minor league side of Blue Jays camp but could move over to the major league side now that Michael Saunders is done for the first half of the 2015 regular season due to a torn left meniscus. Dirks was limited to 14 rehab games in 2014 following March surgery on his back and has been easing into spring training this year. He signed a minor league contract with Toronto in mid-January.
Feb 26 - 11:33 AM

Michael Saunders tore the meniscus in his left knee Wednesday when he stepped on an underground sprinkler and will likely be out until the All-Star break.

He'll have surgery on Friday. It's awful news for the Blue Jays, who were excited about Saunders' potential as their everyday left fielder. The 28-year-old will undergo surgery on the knee next week and his rehabilitation is expected to take close to five months. He was acquired from the Mariners on December 3 for starter J.A. Happ and agreed to a one-year, $2.875 million contract with Toronto on January 16, avoiding arbitration. Kevin Pillar may get the first look in left field. Bringing in outside help is also an option for the Jays.
Feb 26 - 8:28 AM

Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos told Jayson Stark of ESPN that he could still trade Dioner Navarro if another team sees him as a regular catcher.

Anthopoulos doesn't appear to be in any rush to move him, but he's clearly open to a deal if the right offer comes along. Navarro currently projects to have a part-time role with Toronto after the addition of Russell Martin. The 31-year-old hit .274/.317/.395 with 12 home runs and 69 RBI last season and could still have some appeal as a regular catcher with other clubs.
Feb 24 - 12:04 PM

The Blue Jays have decided to use Edwin Encarnacion at first base this season.

The club had previously indicated that Encarnacion would be the primary designated hitter, but they've reversed course. Encarnacion has had some back issues in the past, so he'll likely still see some time in the DH spot when he needs a mini-breather. Justin Smoak, Daric Barton, Danny Valencia and Dioner Navarro are candidates to handle DH duties.
Feb 23 - 6:59 PM

Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos said Monday that things are "status quo" with catcher Dioner Navarro.

Navarro asked for a trade when the Blue Jays signed Russell Martin and said Monday that he's "disappointed" he hasn't been dealt, but Anthopoulos appears content with keeping him around at the moment. The 31-year-old could see part-time at-bats out of the DH spot if he begins the season with Toronto.
Feb 23 - 5:21 PM

Dioner Navarro acknowledged Monday that he asked for a trade "right away" after the Blue Jays signed catcher Russell Martin to a five-year, $82.5 million contract.

Navarro has reported to Blue Jays camp in Dunedin, Florida but told reporters that he is "disappointed" he hasn't been dealt and is hopeful that the Toronto front office can work something out soon. Navarro, 31, batted .274/.317/.395 with 12 home runs and 69 RBI in 139 games last season for the Jays. There should be interest out there.
Feb 23 - 12:49 PM

Johan Santana (shoulder) plans to resume his throwing program this week.

The Twins are among the teams that are still monitoring his situation, but Darren Wolfson of 1500ESPN doesn't expect the club to bring the veteran left-hander back. The 35-year-old plans to sign in the next few weeks on what will assuredly be an incentive-laden minor league deal.
Feb 22 - 6:35 PM

Brett Cecil admitted Sunday that he wants to be the Blue Jays closer and believes he can be successful in that role.

"Absolutely, I want it" Cecil acknowledged when questioned on the subject. He elaborated on his comfort in the role, "I've done it before at this level, I've never been labeled with having the closer's role, solely having it, but having that label isn't going to change anything either." While he does own six career saves and an above-average strikeout rate, Aaron Sanchez would seem to make the most sense as the Jays' stopper, provided they don't keep him in the rotation.
Source: MLB.com
Feb 22 - 6:05 PM

Blue Jays signed OF Chris Dickerson to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training.

The 32-year-old outfielder appeared in 41 games for the Indians in 2014, slashing .224/.309/.327 with a pair of homers and six RBI in 98 at-bats. He'll compete for a reserve outfielder role with the Jays.
Feb 21 - 2:28 PM

Blue Jays catching prospect Max Pentecost recently underwent arthroscopic surgery on his right shoulder.

It's the second procedure he's had on the shoulder this offseason, with the most recent one designed to clean out the joint. Pentecost is expected to resume throwing within three months and will obviously get a late start to the 2015 season. The soon-to-be 22-year-old was the 11th overall pick in last year's Draft.
Source: Sportsnet
Feb 20 - 2:26 PM


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