Blue Jays Activate Shannon Stewart
TORONTO (AP) _ Shannon Stewart was activated from the 15-day disabled list Monday by the Toronto Blue Jays after missing 20 games because of a sore right hamstring.
The Blue Jays also optioned outfielder Jayson Werth to Triple-A Syracuse. He hit .216 with two home runs and eight RBIs with Toronto.
Stewart entered Monday’s game hitting .300 with three home runs and 25 RBIs. The left fielder will return to the starting lineup despite the strong play of outfielder Reed Johnson, who entered Monday hitting .313 with six home runs and 15 RBIs.
``We were fortunate that we had a kid with no experience at all, step into a big role and really perform up to major league standards or above major league standards,″ Toronto manager Carlos Tosca said.
Tosca gave outfielder Frank Catalanotto a day off and started Johnson in right field on Monday night.
He said Johnson has moved ahead of Werth on the depth chart. Stewart is eligible for free agency this fall and could be moved before the July 31 trading deadline.
Stewart, Toronto’s leadoff hitter, tested his legs in a minor league game at Syracuse on Saturday. He went 0-for-3.
Tosca also said third baseman Eric Hinske will begin a rehab assignment at Syracuse on Tuesday. Hinske has been on the 15-day disabled list since May 24 because of a broken bone in his right hand.
Hinske said his hand feels good, and he hopes to be back in Toronto’s lineup this weekend.
``I just have to get my timing back,″ said Hinske, who has been taking batting practice for four days. ``I really don’t have any pain.″