Both injuries are considered minor, but with an off-day coming on Thursday, this was an opportunity to get both players some extended rest with the hope of returning Friday against Boston.
"Michael could play today, but I told him with the off-day Thursday and the lefty [in CC Sabathia on Wednesday], if we can get him through today ... if we can buy him a couple of days, it should be as good as new," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "He hasn't been out there running, but draining the knee, taking a little pressure off, he should be better."
The absence of Saunders and Valencia from the lineup prompted the club to purchase the contract of infielder/outfielder Chris Colabello from Triple-A Buffalo. Colabello got the start in left field on Tuesday night, and he could find himself back there in Wednesday's series finale.
Jose Bautista also was not in the lineup on Tuesday, but Gibbons insisted the decision didn't mean he suffered a setback with his sore shoulder. Bautista has been playing with a strained right shoulder for the past two weeks, and he has been taking all of his at-bats at DH.
Gibbons said Bautista's absence from the lineup was related to making sure he also has appropriate rest. It also gave Edwin Encarnacion an opportunity to DH, while finding some additional playing time for Justin Smoak at first base.
"He's feeling better," Gibbons said of Bautista on Tuesday afternoon. "I'm going to give him tonight off, we have the day off on Thursday, we want him hitting some lefties with Sabathia going tomorrow.
"I also want Smoak to get some at-bats. ... [We want to] keep him somewhat sharp, and plus it gives Eddie a day to rest too and DH."
is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the
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