TORONTO -- Adam Lind continues to progress through rehabilitation for his lower back injury and could be back in the lineup as soon as Friday.
The 27-year-old has missed the Blue Jays' last three games with the ailment after leaving Saturday's game against the Tigers in the seventh inning.
Lind has been receiving a number of treatments, including acupuncture and anti-inflammatory medication, which finally began to set in over the past two days. He played catch before Wednesday's game and was scheduled to hit off a tee as well.
"We'll look to progress to baseball activities further tomorrow provided there aren't any lingering effects of any kind," manager John Farrell said before Wednesday night's game against the Red Sox.
The worst of Lind's back troubles was a spasm that forced him to stiffen up and made even bending over an arduous task. But the team opted against a stint on the disabled list because of the muscular nature of Lind's injury.
"The encouraging thing all along was that there was nothing neurological, so structurally all the medical reports were favorable," Farrell said. "We felt like once the spasm released there was a good chance he could respond and get back in action fairly quickly."
Farrell said there was a possibility Lind could be back in the lineup for Friday's series opener against the Twins, but the manager was waiting to see how he progressed Wednesday and Thursday.
Meanwhile, shortstop Yunel Escobar was back in the lineup Wednesday, less than 24 hours after taking a 91-mph fastball from Jon Lester off his ankle. The 28-year-old left Tuesday's game after the incident, but he felt well enough to hit leadoff Wednesday.
"He was sore last night," Farrell said, "but he came in today, got normal treatment and evaluation. He's good to go."
Arencibia growing into an everyday player
TORONTO -- J.P. Arencibia continues to take positive strides in his quest to become an everyday player in the Major Leagues.
Arencibia began the season starting only three out of every five games. Six weeks into the season, the rookie catcher has earned a more significant role.
The 25-year-old has appeared in all but one of the Blue Jays' 10 games this month, and it's a trend that could continue moving forward.
"I think you're still looking at a two-man position, but I think what has clearly happened is J.P.'s advancement and his progression has pointed us in the direction where there's going to be more at-bats and more games caught," manager John Farrell said before Wednesday night's game against Boston.
When the season first began, veteran catcher Jose Molina was assigned to work with rookie Kyle Drabek and left-hander Jo-Jo Reyes. Both starters are now under the guidance of Arencibia, while Molina continues working exclusively with Brandon Morrow.
That means Arencibia could be in line to start four out of every five days, and the only thing getting in his way would be scheduling. If the team has a night game followed by a day game, it's still possible Farrell will look to find ways to give Arencibia's legs a rest.
One of the main reasons for Arencibia's increased work load has been his work behind the plate. The native of Miami has made several athletic plays while also showing improved game-calling skills.
"We didn't have a date marked on the calendar where we had a projection like, 'Well, he would be ready to take everything over by X date,'" Farrell said.
"His progress has been substantial from the discussions we had in the offseason to the approach we took in Spring Training and the plan we had at the offset of the season."
The latest development will be music to Arencibia's ears. He is batting .239 and ranks third on the team with five home runs while posting 12 RBIs.
"I can be an everyday guy both offensively and defensively," Arencibia said. "I've been maturing and making adjustments on different things. Still, it's a work in progress on both offense and defense. I've always had pride in the [defensive] side of my game."
Nix could join Blue Jays on upcoming road trip
TORONTO -- Infielder Jayson Nix is set to start his rehab assignment and could rejoin the Blue Jays during their upcoming five-game road trip.
Nix played five innings at extended spring training on Wednesday afternoon in Dunedin, Fla. He recorded a couple of hits while also stealing a base according to Toronto manager John Farrell.
The 28-year-old Nix has been out since April 23 with a left shin bruise. He will join Class A Dunedin on Thursday where he is expected to play at least a couple of games before flying north.
"He feels some sensation in the leg when he's running at full speed, but he's getting closer," Farrell said. "I wouldn't rule out some time later this weekend or Monday where he is a legitimate candidate to rejoin us."
The Blue Jays are currently carrying an eight-man bullpen, but that is expected to change once Nix is healthy. Farrell has yet to make an official decision, but it appears the club is leaning towards a traditional seven-man bullpen with four position players off the bench.
That would lead to some tough personnel decisions. Casey Janssen would likely be the most likely candidate to be sent down despite a sparking 1.88 ERA over 14 1/3 innings.
Podsednik released from Triple-A Las Vegas
TORONTO -- Scott Podsednik's brief tenure with the Blue Jays came to an end on Wednesday afternoon.
The club granted Podsednik his release from Triple-A Las Vegas after 17 games in the Minor Leagues. He now becomes a free agent and is eligible to sign with another organization.
The 35-year-old signed a Minor League deal with an invite to Spring Training in February. He lost his opportunity to break camp with the team after developing a case of plantar fasciitis in his left foot.
"We had a handshake agreement, as we do with a lot of our players," general manager Alex Anthopoulos said. "We don't have out-clauses, but we do have what we call a common-sense rule.
"Especially with guys like Scott, that are quality big league players, if we don't have a spot for them at the time, and we have people ahead of them on the depth chart, we're not going to stand in their way."
Podsednik's foot injury was the same one that cost him the final three weeks of the 2010 season. He aggravated the foot during the offseason and spent most of the spring trying to work his way back to full health.
He began the year in extended spring training before beginning his rehab with Class A Dunedin. He was promoted to Las Vegas after three games, but his ascension stopped there. In 10 games with the 51s, Podsednik hit .254 (15-for-59) with three stolen bases.
"We didn't sign him like we told him to spend the whole year in Las Vegas," Anthopoulos said. "He was more than welcome to stay, but also we wanted to be sure to be honest with him that right now, 'You're not the first guy up if we have a need in the outfield and we want you to be aware of that like we promised you we would. If you want to try and get to the big leagues with somebody else, certainly, by all means,' but the door is always open to come back if he wants to."
Podsednik is hitting .279, with 301 stolen bases in his 10-year Major League career.
According to manager John Farrell, in the event that Yunel Escobar was unavailable to play Wednesday, leaving the Blue Jays with a one-man bench, right-hander Casey Janssen would serve as the team's backup outfielder and an option to pinch-run. ... Farrell also indicated that Jose Bautista, Juan Rivera and J.P. Arencibia could all fill in on the infield in the event of an injury. ... Jose Bautista has reached base safely in 27 of his 28 games this season. ... Outfield prospect Anthony Gose went 2-for-3 for Double-A New Hampshire on Tuesday night and is hitting .339 (20-for-59) over his last 15 games.
Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. Arden Zwelling is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.