The Blue Jays are placing George Springer back on the 10-day injured list, retroactive to May 3, with a right quad strain (via Shi Davidi of Sportsnet). The star center fielder reaggravated the same injury that kept him out for almost all of April. It’s unclear how long the team expects him to be sidelined this time around, but Springer was sent for an MRI earlier today, per Gregor Chisholm of the Toronto Star (Twitter link). In a corresponding move, Jonathan Davis has been recalled from Triple-A Buffalo.
It’s tough to imagine a worse start to Springer’s tenure in Toronto. The 31-year-old strained an oblique in Spring Training. On the cusp of returning from that injury, he suffered the aforementioned first quad strain. The quad delayed his regular season debut by a few weeks, and it’s causing him issue yet again.
Altogether, the series of injuries has limited Springer to 18 plate appearances in four games. That’s certainly not what he or the Jays imagined when he signed the offseason’s biggest free agent guarantee (six years, $150MM) over the winter. While Springer went on the IL each season from 2017-19, those absences generally didn’t keep him out long. He tallied 550+ plate appearances every year from 2016-19 and avoided the IL in 2020, playing in 51 of a possible 60 games. Of course, Springer earned that massive contract with an extended run of productivity, hitting .273/.363/.500 (135 wRC+) over his final five seasons with the Astros.
With Springer out for the season’s first month, the Jays turned to Randal Grichuk and Davis to cover center field. Grichuk, who has hit a strong .287/.330/.475, is likely in line for the lion’s share of playing time there yet again. Davis got off to a dreadful start to the year before being optioned after Springer came off the IL last week.