"I feel great," Saunders said. "I couldn’t believe it when I woke up this morning and I was walking around just fine. I walked out of surgery just fine. I actually started doing some exercises today and just got checked out by the doctor and he was pleasantly surprised with what he saw. There’s not as much swelling as he originally thought. Everything is checking out so far and everything is good news. No pain. It feels like I banged my knee on a pole and it’s a tiny bit swollen."
Saunders suffered a torn meniscus while tracking a foul ball Wednesday, tripping over a sprinkler head and hearing a popping sound. After initially being told he could need to have the meniscus repaired, a procedure that carries a recovery time of three-to-five months, Saunders had the torn portion of the meniscus removed, which places him on track to return to action within six weeks. While the outfielder is excited to be back on the field in a much shorter time, he indicated he'll be cautious with his rehab.
"I’m going to miss some spring training but it could be a lot worse," Saunders said. "My ligaments are intact. For me this is the best-case scenario. I’m going to do everything I can to make sure I’m ready to go. I’d love to say that I’ll be ready opening day. That’s my goal. But we’re targeting more mid-April, on the safe side. At the end of the day I have to listen to my knee. It’s a long season. I’m going to get this right the first time and not rush back."
Saunders was initially expected to miss half the season while recovering from a meniscus tear. He had 60 percent of the meniscus removed from his left knee Friday, MLB.com reports. The cartilage was unable to be repaired, which would have resulted in a longer recovery time for the outfielder.
On his new timetable, Saunders could be back in action by early-to-mid April if the team chooses not to have him open the season on the disabled list.
Saunders, who was slated to start in left field for Toronto, said he suffered the injury Wednesday after he stepped on a sprinkler head while shagging fly balls during batting practice, per the National Post.
“My goal is to be back by the All-Star break,” Saunders said. “I don’t see why there should be any hiccups in my rehab.”
Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos said the team would most likely replace Saunders, who was acquired in a December trade with the Mariners, with an internal candidate.
Saunders spent the first six seasons of his MLB career with Seattle. He hit .273 with a .341 on-base percentage, .450 slugging percentage and .791 OPS in 78 games last season.
Saunders was acquired by Toronto in a December trade with Seattle. The 28-year-old Saunders is a career .231 hitter with a .384 slugging percentage and .685 OPS in six MLB seasons.
The 28-year-old Saunders is coming off a season in which he hit .273/.341/.450 over 231 at-bats. He had been mentioned as a popular trade candidate all offseason. Saunders is entering his second year of arbitration, and is set to become a free-agent following the 2016 season.
Happ, 32, posted a 4.22 ERA over 158 innings with Toronto. The Blue Jays picked up his $6.7 million option earlier in the offseason. He'll be a free-agent at the end of the year.
|CBSSports.com Player Ranking|
|9/28/2014 vs L.A. Angels|
|vs L.A. Angels||22||7||2||.414||.727||.318|
|vs Rasmus (Career)||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|Last 7 Games|
|Complete Game Log|
| 5 || 6 |
| 7 || 8 |
| 9 |
| 10 |
| 12 |
| 13 |
| 14 |
| 15 |
| 16 |
| 17 |
|More Batting Stats|
|Minor League Batting Stats|
Toronto Blue Jays Majestic Royal Blue Official 2015 Authentic Collection Cool Base Jersey Shop Now!