CLEVELAND -- Blue Jays second baseman Devon Travis will miss the remainder of the postseason because of an injured right knee.Major League Baseball announced on Saturday afternoon that it approved a request by Toronto to replace Travis on the 25-man roster for the American League Championship Series vs. Cleveland. Justin
CLEVELAND -- Blue Jays second baseman Devon Travis will miss the remainder of the postseason because of an injured right knee.
Major League Baseball announced on Saturday afternoon that it approved a request by Toronto to replace Travis on the 25-man roster for the American League Championship Series vs. Cleveland. Justin Smoak will take Travis' spot on the roster, and Darwin Barney started at second base for Game 2, which Toronto lost, 2-1. Cleveland has a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven ALCS.
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Per MLB postseason rules, a club may request permission from the Commissioner's Office to replace a player who is unable to play because of injury. In accordance to those rules, Travis is ineligible to return in the World Series if the Blue Jays advance.
"There's enough information to suggest that the injury has changed and there is more of an injury than just the bone bruise," Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins said. "I don't want to get into the specifics of it yet until we get more information as the swelling gets down, as the inflammation gets out of there. I'd rather have a much clearer picture, but there was enough information to suggest that the injury was new."
Travis missed the final two games of the AL Division Series against the Rangers because of a bone bruise in his right knee. He showed some improvement during the four days between series, and he passed a series of tests that allowed him to be added to the roster.
The knee issue resurfaced during the fifth inning of Friday's Game 1. Travis felt a sharp pain while covering first base on a bunt by Coco Crisp, and during the following play, he had to stop running and began to hop on one leg while calling for the club's medical staff.
There was some initial confusion about whether Toronto would be allowed to replace Travis on the roster because it could have been considered a preexisting condition. In the end, the Blue Jays received approval because Travis exacerbated the injury after the final roster was due prior to the start of the ALCS.
According to a statement, Dr. Gary Green, who is MLB's medical director, "confirmed the injury after communicating with the evaluating physician, as well as reviewing the test imaging and Travis' medical history." The Blue Jays have yet to release the results of Travis' latest MRI, which took place in Toronto on Saturday afternoon.
"Yes, there was that chance," Atkins said when asked if MLB could have refused the request because of the preexisting condition. "That was why we built the roster the way we did for this round. But there's subjectivity to that. That would have been a call of the Commissioner.
"I'm not a doctor, but my understanding is these injuries are isolated. They're in the same area, but they're two independent injuries. They're not the same injury."
Barney and Ryan Goins will platoon at second base for the remainder of Toronto's postseason. Gibbons said the decisions on who will play each game will be based on matchups, and the numbers of the opposing pitcher vs. right-handed and left-handed batters. Barney entered Saturday with three hits in four at-bats vs. Game 2 starter Josh Tomlin, while Goins had one hit in two at-bats.
"We're going to move forward," Barney said. "We're going to try to do what we can to fill that big hole that Devon brings to this lineup. That guy is so diverse offensively that I don't think there's another guy on this team that can do what he does offensively, but hopefully we can go out there and play well."
In other injury news, Toronto left-hander Francisco Liriano was available to come out of the bullpen for Game 2. Liriano had to miss an obligatory seven days after he sustained a concussion during Game 2 of the ALDS, but he has since been cleared by MLB's medical director.
Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast.