Bautista arrives, Wilkerson DL'd
TORONTO — It felt a little like a Sportscenter commercial this afternoon when I arrived at Rogers Centre, seeing John McDonald in his Blue Jays uniform at the gate where media checks in.
It’s certainly odd to see a player in his uni outside of the clubhouse or not on the field. A couple Jays fans tried to get in the gate to ask for Johnny Mac’s autograph and were quickly escorted back outside.
Knowing Mac, he would’ve signed, but he understandably didn’t want to step out into the street in his full uniform for fear of being swarmed by all the fans outside at the ticket counter. I’m sure he’d apologize to those fans who tried to get inside to where he was standing.
There was a new player in uniform for the Jays today as well. Jose Bautista was on hand, but not in the lineup. He’ll start at third on Saturday with Boston lefty Jon Lester on the hill. To make room on the roster, Toronto placed Brad Wilkerson on the disabled list.
That was a little unexpected, but apparently Wilkerson has been bothered by back spasms fof late. He’s also nursing a sore left shoulder and will have it checked out while on the DL, but manager Cito Gaston stressed that the arm issue wasn’t why he was disabled.
Leaning on the bench in the dugout was a bat that I’m assuming Bautista brought along for batting practice purposes. But, instead of his name, it had Pirates second baseman and 2006 NL batting champ Freddy Sanchez’s name engraved on the side. Not a bad strip of lumber to practice with.
BOSTON (73-54) TORONTO (66-61)
at 7:07 p.m. ET at the Rogers Centre
Jacoby Ellsbury, RF
Dustin Pedroia, 2B
David Ortiz, DH
Kevin Youkilis, 1B
Jason Bay, LF
Jed Lowrie, 3B
Jason Varitek, C
Alex Cora, SS
Coco Crisp, CF
PITCHING: RHP Paul Byrd (7-11, 4.54)
Joe Inglett, 2B
Marco Scutaro, 3B
Alex Rios, RF
Vernon Wells, CF
Adam Lind, LF
Lyle Overbay, 1B
Matt Stairs, DH
Gregg Zaun, C
John McDonald, SS
PITCHING: RHP Shaun Marcum (8-5, 3.36)