TORONTO -- The Blue Jays are optimistic that Adam Lind will be able to return to the club's lineup by the end of next week.
Lind hasn't played since May 7 because of tightness in his lower back. He is currently rehabbing at the club's Minor League complex in Florida, but has yet to appear in a game.
The 27-year-old was originally scheduled to start at designated hitter in an extended spring training game on Saturday, but that was pushed back until Monday to accommodate a revised workout routine.
Lind will then move on to start an official rehab assignment, and his projected return to Toronto is June 3 against the Orioles.
"In the first four days of next week, not only will he DH in extended spring, but we would also get him some at-bats in the Florida State League and obviously a game or two at first base," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said. "That would be the optimistic plan at this point."
Lind has been going through baseball-related activities in Dunedin, Fla., but is still experiencing some discomfort when running at full speed. That type of activity has a jarring impact on the spasms in his lower back, but the rest of his workouts have been progressing as expected.
"That's the only reproducing of any symptoms has been in a full-out sprint," Farrell said. "All his conditioning is still being done on low impact, elliptical, running in the pool. But he has taken all of his work at first base, live BP, there have been no issues there."
Lind is batting .313 with seven home runs and 27 RBIs in 32 games this season.
McDonald lands on DL with strained hamstring
TORONTO -- Blue Jays infielder John McDonald was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained right hamstring following Friday night's game against the White Sox.
McDonald had been hampered by the injury for the past two weeks, but it eventually reached a point where an extended period of rest was required.
Toronto recalled utility man Mike McCoy to take McDonald's spot on the 25-man roster.
"Obviously, with my performance over the past couple of weeks, it's probably time to let my body heal up and get back here in 15 days, ready to play," said McDonald, who didn't have a hit over his past six games.
"When you can't give the effort you need to give because of an injury, you have to back off because you have to be able to give 110 percent."
McDonald sat out four consecutive games after Jayson Nix returned from an injury on May 16. McDonald was hopeful that would have been enough time to get back to full strength, but the injury became increasingly painful over time.
The strain has limited his speed on the basepaths, and while McDonald didn't want to use excuses, it likely impacted his range in the field, as well.
"That was the plan, and it worked and then fortunately I was able to get into games," McDonald said. "It's so much fun to play, your competitive energy takes over, and you do everything you can to help us get wins.
"We were playing good baseball, too, so you don't want to mess with that. We were on a good winning streak, and you want to be a part of that. Unfortunately, things happen."
McDonald will head to the Blue Jays Minor League complex in Florida to begin his rehab on Sunday.
Toronto was also without infielder Edwin Encarnacion on Friday night. Encarnacion fouled a ball off his great (big) left toe during an at-bat against Bartolo Colon in New York.
The same incident occurred again during batting practice on Thursday, which caused even further damage to his foot. He will be re-evaluated before Saturday's game against the White Sox.
"We're at the point where that toe nail might have to be drilled to relieve the blood that's built up in there," manager John Farrell said.
Farrell reflects on Posey's severe injury
TORONTO -- The safety of catchers in Major League Baseball has become a hot topic in recent days following the severe injury to Buster Posey.
The Giants rising star suffered a broken left leg and torn ankle ligaments during a collision at home plate with Florida's Scott Cousins on Wednesday.
Posey was attempting to catch a throw from right field when the Marlins outfielder came barreling into home to try and knock the ball loose.
That has brought suggestions from Posey's agent and others around baseball that rule changes should be considered to try to protect catchers.
"Those plays are inherent to the position," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said. "In general, if a catcher is standing in the basepaths before the ball gets there, he is exposing himself to a collision.
"It's a shame that he got hurt, first and foremost, or any player gets hurt in those situations. But I think there are certain things you can't avoid, either."
Protecting catchers isn't exactly a new topic -- it has been around baseball for decades. When teams have rising offensive talent behind the plate, it's usually only a matter of time before suggestions start popping up that the star player should be moved to another position to protect his overall health.
Farrell was a director of player development in Cleveland when Victor Martinez broke into the Major Leagues. The organization was faced with similar questions, but for Farrell, the decision came down to putting the best team on the field.
"When you put together a team that has a chance to compete for a championship, Victor's performance as a catcher was the best in baseball," Farrell said. "The argument was put him at first base, well, then he becomes an average first baseman from an offensive performance standpoint."
Farrell added the Blue Jays go through techniques and instruction on how to properly react to potential situations around home plate. Those conversations are ongoing and didn't take on a special importance just because of the recent Posey injury.
Gently used equipment and monetary donations will be accepted at Rogers Centre Gates 3, 5, 10 and 13 on Saturday and Sunday to benefit Jays Care Foundations Rookie League. Rookie League runs in partnership with Toronto Community Housing, and will host over 700 children and youth in 30 Toronto Community Housing neighborhoods for an eight-week baseball camp.
First baseman Juan Rivera extended his hitting streak to nine games with an RBI double during the first inning of Friday night's game against the White Sox. Rivera entered the day hitting .379 (11-for-29) with two doubles, two home runs and six runs scored over that span.
Shortstop Yunel Escobar now has an eight-game hitting streak following a leadoff single on Friday night against left-hander Mark Buehrle. Escobar entered Friday hitting .355 (22-for-62) with a .440 on-base percentage over his past 16 games. That OBP ranks second in the American League during that span.