Minor League complex avoids storm damage

Blue Jays' players, staff in Dunedin, Fla., fine after Hurricane Irma; Martin back soon

Minor League complex avoids storm damage

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays' Minor League complex in Dunedin, Fla., appears to have avoided major damage in the wake of Hurricane Irma, which devastated many areas in Florida and throughout the Caribbean islands.

Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins confirmed Monday afternoon that all players and staff were accounted for and in good health. Toronto's complex also came away relatively unscathed, with the exception of some minor disturbances.

Toronto donated $1 from each ticket sold for Monday's series opener against the Orioles to the Canadian Red Cross' relief efforts in the Caribbean and southern United States.

"Some netting came down," Atkins said. "A strength and conditioning storage unit that moved a bit. Other than that, the families and players that stayed there have already started to go home and our staff are unharmed. We weathered the storm as well as we could have hoped."

Toronto took extra precautions in the days leading up to the hurricane. The Bobby Mattick complex was stocked with food and water so any Minor League players and their families in the area had a place to ride out the storm. The Florida State League also cancelled its championship series and instead named the Dunedin Blue Jays co-champions.

Martin nearing return

Russell Martin is getting closer to making a return, and it's possible the veteran catcher will be back in the Blue Jays' lineup "within a couple of days." Martin took batting practice Monday afternoon and was scheduled to catch a bullpen session later in the day.

Martin has been out since Aug. 11 because of a strained oblique muscle.

Martin exits in 2nd inning

"Hitting is really the big thing because of all that rotating you do," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "But he has done that a couple of times now and has felt great, so it looks like he's passed it."

Big week for Osuna and Saunders

Blue Jays closer Roberto Osuna and outfielder Michael Saunders are away from the team this week to attend the birth of their children. Osuna returned to Mexico on Monday morning, while Saunders flew to Colorado to be with his wife. Both players are expected to be back for the start of a four-game series against the Twins on Thursday night in Minnesota.

Worth noting

Josh Donaldson returned to the lineup Monday following a three-game absence because of the flu. Donaldson hadn't played since last Tuesday, as he received a day to rest on Wednesday, which was followed by a club off-day and then the flu. Jose Bautista and Justin Smoak were each held out of the starting lineup because of subpar career numbers vs. Orioles righty Ubaldo Jimenez. Smoak was 2-for-24 vs. Jimenez, while Bautista was 3-for-43.

• With Blue Jays righty Aaron Sanchez out for the rest of the season because of a finger injury, Gibbons confirmed he will stick with the current starting five the rest of the way. Barring injuries, Toronto will use Marcus Stroman, Marco Estrada, J.A. Happ, Brett Anderson and Joe Biagini.

Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.