Blue Jays outfielder Michael Saunders tore a meniscus in his knee, is out until the All-Star Break

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Bad news from the first week of Blue Jays camp in Dunedin. Shi Davidi reports that their newly-acquired outfielder Michael Saunders stepped on a soft spot of ground near an underground sprinkler yesterday, his knee buckled and he tore a meniscus. He’ll require surgery and will be out until at last the All-Star Break.

Saunders was acquired from Seattle back in December for J.A. Happ. He has battled injury at times, but he has a 111 OPS+ since the beginning of the 2012 season and won’t be a free agent for another two years. The Jays were counting on him to be a key part of their outfield, and now he’s out for months.

It’s unclear if the Jays will try to cover for his loss in-house or if they’ll seek some help in the form of a trade.

 

Royals, Alex Gordon close to contract agreement

Alex Gordon
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MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan reports that the Royals and outfielder Alex Gordon are “getting close” to an agreement on a one-year contract. Terms of the deal aren’t yet known, but the Royals could make it official within the next few days.

Gordon, who turns 36 years old next month, hit .266/.345/.396 with 13 home runs and 76 RBI over 633 plate appearances with the Royals this past season. His offense has waned, owning an adjusted OPS of 84 since 2016 (100 is average), but he still plays decent defense.

Gordon has spent all 13 years of his major league career with the Royals. With the club in a rebuilding phase, he will serve as the clubhouse leader and be a mentor to younger players on the roster.