Encarnacion to play in extended spring game

Encarnacion to play in extended spring game

TORONTO -- Blue Jays third baseman Edwin Encarnacion, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list April 15 with right arm soreness, will likely play third on Monday in an extended spring game at the club's Minor League complex in Dunedin, Fla.

While a definitive date has not been set for Encarnacion's return, it remains unknown who will be removed from the lineup to make room for the rehabbing 27-year-old.

With the organization's commitment to playing outfielder Travis Snider, and Jose Bautista's potent bat -- four home runs and 16 RBIs -- and defensive versatility, it appears newly acquired Fred Lewis will be the odd man out.

"When Edwin comes back, Bautista has to go out there, and I'm not sure what we're going to do with left field," Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston said prior to Sunday's game vs. the A's. "If it ends up being Lewis out there or ends up being Snider out there, I don't know right now. We'll see what happens."

Gaston, however, has made it clear on several occasions that Snider is a cornerstone for this organization going forward and that he has nothing left to prove in Triple-A, citing if Snider is with the big club, he's going to see everyday playing time.

Bautista, who filled in at third base in Encarnacion's absence, said he is comfortable wherever Gaston sees fit.

"No preference," Bautista said as to where he wants to play. "It just depends on the type of configuration the team has and where the manager wants to use me."

"I feel a little bit more comfortable in the outfield," Bautista added, "just because I've been playing most of the last couple seasons out there. I'm making a bit of an adjustment back in the infield, but I do enjoy playing third."