Cody Ross is “certain” to begin the season on the disabled list

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Cody Ross is “certain” to begin the season on the disabled list with the calf injury he suffered earlier this week, according to Andrew Baggarly of the San Jose Mercury News.

That could potentially open the door for top prospect Brandon Belt to make the Opening Day roster, but that would involve Aubrey Huff shifting to the outfield full time and the Giants seem more likely to use Nate Schierholtz or Mark DeRosa to fill in for Ross unless it proves to be a major injury.

San Francisco brought back Ross for $6.3 million following his postseason heroics, but even if the calf injury only keeps him out for a couple weeks the 30-year-old with a track record of mediocrity is unlikely to be worth that money.

Blue Jays clinch playoff berth with Orioles’ loss to Red Sox

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TORONTO — The Blue Jays clinched a postseason berth Thursday without taking the field.

Toronto was assured of an AL wild card berth when the Boston Red Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-3.

If Toronto holds its current position as the first of the AL’s three wild cards, the Blue Jays would open a best-of-three wild-card series at Rogers Centre next week.

“These guys are excited to be in this position,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said after Wednesday’s 8-3 loss to the New York Yankees. “You’ve got three really good pitchers lined up against a good Boston team, playing at home. So I think it’s more excitement more than it’s nerves or anything. I think the guys are going to come out and be ready to roll on Friday night.”

Toronto became the fourth AL team to clinch a playoff berth, joining division champions Houston, the Yankees and Cleveland. The Astros and Yankees have first-round byes.

The Blue Jays last went to the playoffs in 2020, when they were knocked out with two straight losses to Tampa Bay.

Eight of the 12 berths in the expanded postseason have been clinched: The Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis earned division titles, and Atlanta and the New York Mets are assured no worse the wild cards while still competing to win the NL East. The Dodgers have a first-round bye.