Martin (paternity) returned to the active roster Friday, Mike Wilner of Sportsnet 590 The Fan reports. Martin returns to the Blue Jays after spending the three-day maximum on the paternity list. The veteran catcher is not in the lineup for Friday's game against the Yankees, and he's likely to continue receiving sporadic playing time in his new utility role over the final weeks as the team provides at-bats to its younger players.
Martin was placed on the paternity list Tuesday, Hazel Mae of Sportsnet reports. This move is unlikely to have much of a ripple effect, as Martin has played just twice in September. The Blue Jays are preferring to give at-bats to younger players, a trend which will continue even after Martin's return.
Manager John Gibbons said Martin will not play "all that much down the stretch" as the club integrates younger players into the lineup during the final month of the 2018 season, Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.ca reports. This shouldn't come as a major surprise considering Martin has only played in two games dating back to Aug. 31. Danny Jansen will continue to receive a majority of the starts behind the plate while Reese McGuire will likely see an expanded role. In addition, the plethora of young infielders will take precedent instead of Martin getting the occasional start at third base. Looking ahead, Martin remains under contract for the 2019 campaign but is staring at a backup role behind Jansen barring any changes.
Martin is out of the lineup Sunday against the Marlins. Martin will head to the bench for the third time in five games and no longer looks to be in line for regular starts at catcher or third base, where Danny Jansen and Aledmys Diaz, respectively, have emerged as the top options at those positions. Since Martin is still under contract through 2019, he likely won't be phased out entirely, but expect the Blue Jays to nonetheless prioritize at-bats for their younger players over the final few weeks of the campaign.
Martin is starting at third base Sunday against the Rays. Martin seemed to be losing playing time to Luke Maile behind the dish, and the outlook only got bleaker with the callup of catching prospect Danny Jansen on Sunday. That said, Martin's ability to play third base could help keep him in the lineup until Josh Donaldson (calf) is ready to return to the fray. The veteran backstop will need to improve with the bat to warrant much consideration in most fantasy formats though, as he is hitting below the Mendoza Line this season and is on pace for career lows in extra-base hits, runs scored and RBI.
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