Francisco Cordero will serve in that role while Santos is on the disabled list with right shoulder inflammation. He nailed down his first opportunity on Sunday, recording the save in the Blue Jays' 5-3 win. Cordero has 328 career saves, ranking 12th all-time.
Having Cordero available to fill in for Santos might be the ultimate luxury for the Blue Jays. Manager John Farrell lauded general manager Alex Anthopoulos for bringing in Cordero this winter.
"It goes back to what Alex set off to do in the offseason," Farrell said before Sunday's game against the Royals. "And to be able to recruit and bring in and sign Francisco Cordero, it certainly adds a lot of experience, a lot of past save history. And in a case like now when we've got to take a little bit of a time out with Sergio, to have that veteran presence and that success down there is a little bit of a comfort. But it also gives us a bona fide closer that we can build and bridge to to close out games."
In his first six appearances this season with Toronto, Cordero, 36, allowed three runs on seven hits and two walks. But he's been a dominant closer throughout his career. Last season, he recorded 37 saves with Cincinnati. Between 2004 and 2011, he saved 34 games or more seven times.
Toronto's ninth-inning role seems to be in good hands during Santos' absence.
Farrell said that Santos was flying to California on Sunday and will meet with orthopedic surgeon Lewis Yocum on Monday as a precaution.
"Anytime you're dealing with any player -- Sergio or otherwise -- we're going to run him through our normal protocol for evaluation, examination, and determine a course of action going forward," Farrell said.