TORONTO - Drew Hutchison joined fellow Blue Jays starters Brandon Morrow and Kyle Drabek on the 15-day disabled list Saturday, though surgery on his tender elbow is not in the picture, at least for the moment.
"It's a sprain," manager John Farrell said. "How severe that sprain is, what degree which would correlate a percentage of tearing, I don't have those specifics. Drew is considering a second opinion which is well within the player's right and is completely normal. Everything right now points toward avoiding surgery. Time will be needed for it to heal.
"What we don't know is how long that will take. If, in the course of rehab and returning to throw, there are issues that arise then we will have to re-evaluate at that point. But that is getting way ahead of the game right now."
The Jays braintrust has not yet settled on replacements for Drabek and Hutchison, but Brett Cecil will take Morrow's spot against the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday afternoon.
A FEW GOOD MEN
Rotation candidates for starts on Tuesday and Wednesday in Milwaukee are still up in the air. Candidates include Robert Coello, who pitched Saturday, Carlos Villanueva, who stepped in to pick up Hutchison on Friday and Jesse Chavez, currently in Las Vegas.
Villanueva is the most experienced, but Farrell is hesitant.
"He's in the mix but we haven't determined who is going to start on Wednesday.
"The one thing we have to factor in is that toward the end of that 12-start run that he made (in 2011), he went down with arm issues as well, so that will be part of what will factor in to who slides into that spot."
OLIVER IS GOLD
An ongoing concern is bullpen overuse, and that may become even more of a factor with an unsettled rotation. One arm Farrell wants to protect is that of 42-year-old Darren Oliver.
"He's not dealing with anything physically but he's someone, because he is so effective, you want to use him all the time and he might need a little recovery time now and then.
"It's easy to call down there and say: 'Hey, get Oliver going.' But every pitcher has needs."