While a return to right field isn't imminent for Jose Bautista, Michael Saunders reportedly is at least one month from patrolling left field.
It might be as long as six weeks for the Victoria native who was put on the 15-day disabled list on May 10 with inflammation in his surgically repaired left knee and now is being told to rest longer.
Saunders will visit Dr. James Andrews on Monday to ensure he hasn't suffered any new structural damage to the knee. The 28-year-old made his Blue Jays debut on April 25 but was largely ineffective at the plate in nine games, posting a .194 batting average with three runs batted in and 10 strikeouts.
"When I swing, I'm losing my back knee. I can't sit on it," he told reporters earlier this week. "The power comes from the ground up and everything has to do with your legs. I don't think it [the recovery] will be a long time."
Well, six weeks might feel long considering Saunders missed spring training. During an informal workout before the pre-season he stepped on a sprinkler head and had 60 per cent of his meniscus removed.
During Thursday night's 6-4 loss in Houston, the Blue Jays started an outfield, from left, of Chris Colabello, Kevin Pillar and Ezequiel. None of the three opened the season in April as starters with the team, but Canadian Dalton Pompey was sent to triple-A to get back on track and Bautista strained his right shoulder trying to throw a Baltimore Orioles player out at first base.