Jays Notebook: Jays spoil Bobby Cox's final visit
DUNEDIN, Fla. - The Jays came back three separate times in Saturday's game against the Braves including erasing one-run deficits in the ninth and 10th innings, winning 7-6 and spoiling Bobby Cox's final visit to Dunedin Stadium as manager.
“Bobby doesn't like to lose,” Jays' manager Cito Gaston chuckled. “I went over and shook hands with the coaches after the game. I said tell Bobby good luck, but wait until the bus gets back. Bobby's like me. He doesn't like to lose.”
The hard-fought win lifted the Jays' spring mark to 9-6. They continue the spring schedule Sunday in Dunedin. Righthander Shaun Marcum will face lefty Felix Doumont for the Red Sox.
HITS: Shortstop John McDonald with two outs in the ninth, lined a game-tying single to left field ... in the 10th, trailing by a run, first baseman Mike McDade drove a double up the gap in left-centre scoring Ryan Schimpf and Joey Gathright who had singled ... Aaron Hill drilled his second home run of the spring in the fourth inning vs. Derek Lowe ... third-baseman Jose Bautista was 2-for-3.
MISSES: Relievers Kevin Gregg and Merkin Valdez each entered a tie game and surrendered a run in one inning. Gregg allowed three hits, while striking out two ... Adam Lind booted a groundball single to left, allowing the Braves' third run to score ... On the nicest day of the spring, on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, the Jays did not sell out against the Braves for Cox's last visit.
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Righthander Dustin McGowan has encountered yet another setback on his road back to the majors. The Jays' have decided to shut the 27-year-old righthander down for a minimum of seven days after his first outing in true game conditions on Friday for Triple-A Las Vegas.
Facing enemy hitters for the first time in 619 days, McGowan, rehabbing from a shoulder injury suffered on July 8, 2008, felt the symptoms of “dead arm” which is common even among healthy hurlers. He threw 36 pitches and topped out in the high '80s.
“In talking to (trainer) George (Poulis), the kid's been throwing since November,” manager Cito Gaston said. “You get dead arm. We hope that's what it is. We're just hoping he can come back and pitch again for us some time this year.”
It's become apparent McGowan will not be ready for Opening Day. He can remain on the disabled list and at extended spring training and pitch in those games indefinitely. When he is ready to join a minor-league affiliate, he can be sent on a rehab-option that can last up to 30 days.
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The Jays sent four more non-roster players to minor-league camp for reassignment, including pitchers Willie Collazzo, Romie Lewis and Steven Register, plus outfielder Jorge Padilla. The Jays still have 40 players in major-league camp, including seven non-roster players.
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Lefthanded reliever Jesse Carlson will throw from a mound on Monday for the first time in 12 days. He has been sidelined with discomfort in the medial collateral ligament (MCL) of his left knee. Carlson has made one game appearance thus far in Grapefruit League play.
Third baseman Edwin Encarnacion may be able to participate in a game by next week, according to manager Cito Gaston. Encarnacion has not been in a Grapefruit League game while rehabbing his left wrist. With opening day still a couple of weeks away, Gaston is optimistic.
Versatile utility man Mike McCoy, this year's answer to Joe Inglett, has been hobbled by an injured right shoulder. McCoy, who is batting .615 in eight games, may be ready to play a game at minor league camp early next week.