Jose Bautista heads to DL, but says hopefully: 'I'll be back soon'

Tests reveal no structural damage to Bautista's wrist. (Getty Images)

NEW YORK -- As Jose Bautista walked through the visiting clubhouse Tuesday afternoon, he seemed to be speaking to his Blue Jays teammates as much as to reporters.

"I'll be back soon," Bautista promised, after the Blue Jays put him on the disabled list with inflammation in his left wrist.

Bautista said he feared the worst when he hurt the wrist on a swing Monday night, but that after an array of tests he had been assured that there was no structural damage in the wrist. He said he's hopeful of returning in two weeks, although Jays manager John Farrell said the team will proceed cautiously.

The problem for the Blue Jays is that they're already 10.5 games out of first place in the American League East, with a rotation torn apart by injuries.

"They have to sell, don't they, especially now," said one scout at Yankee Stadium, echoing what other rival executives have said.

The Blue Jays would have some interesting pieces to move, including shortstop Yunel Escobar (who could be traded whether they consider themselves sellers or not) and a few late-inning relievers (whose departure would essentially mean that the Jays are looking to next year).

Bautista, not surprisingly, is still thinking about 2012. He said his injury was unfortunate because "it happened in such an important part of the season."

The Jays entered play Tuesday at 45-45, impressive given the pitching injuries but indicative of how challenging it would be for them to truly contend this year.

Still, Bautista expressed optimism.

"We're playing good ball," Bautista said. "That's more important than the injuries. At least for the most part, we've kept the core of the team healthy. Yeah, I'm out two weeks, but I'll be back."

The Blue Jays can only hope he will be back soon.

"It's not just offensively," outfielder Rajai Davis said. "He's our captain. He's our everything."

Now, he's out for a while.

"Hopefully, two weeks is enough," he said. "I'm thinking it will be."

The Blue Jays called up Anthony Gose to replace Bautista on the roster, and Farrell said Gose will likely play regularly against right-handers. Brett Lawrie took Bautista's regular spot in the batting order Tuesday, hitting third against the Yankees' CC Sabathia.

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