Lawrie back on track

KEN FIDLIN, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:28 PM ET

ARLINGTON, TEX. - Brett Lawrie has stepped back into the Las Vegas 51’s lineup after almost a two-month layoff and picked up right where he left off.

In his first two games, he went 0-for-7 but in his last three, heading into Saturday’s game, he was 8-for-15 with three extra-base hits, including his 16th home run of the season.

“There’s been some hard contact,” Blue Jays manager John Farrell said. “He’s doing a good job defensively as well. As we look at situations where a guy is missing from the lineup for a stretch of games, when they’re able to step back in and maintain the approach they had prior to the injury, those are all encouraging signs.

“It hasn’t given us a projected date (for a callup) but it’s good to see him back on the field doing what he’s doing.”

SLIM CONSOLATION

J.P. Arencibia belted a pair of homers on Friday ... but dismissed them as irrelevant when his primary responsibility is to guide his pitchers through the game and the opposition scores a dozen runs.

“You like to hear that from a catcher because his first and foremost responsibility is getting the most out of his pitchers,” Farrell said. “He takes ownership in the final outcome. When runs are put up on the board, catchers take that personally. At the same time, when you can get that kind of offensive contribution from the guy behind the plate, it’s a plus.”

JOEY BATS, PERIOD

As planned, Jose Bautista was in the lineup as DH Saturday, simply to ease him back into regular duty in the field. He played third base Friday and likely will play at third again Sunday.

By Tuesday, when the Blue Jays play host to Baltimore, it’s expected Bautista will be back in the field to stay.

“The one thing we have to consider is that anytime a guy sprains his ankle there is an endurance factor that needs to be built up,” Farrell said. “That’s what went into our thinking this weekend but we don’t lose that big bat in the middle of our lineup.


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