TORONTO -- The Blue Jays will be without the services of Russell Martin for at least the next couple of days after Toronto's starting catcher injured his left knee in the shower.
The veteran backstop took a shower after spending time in the sauna during Thursday's off-day and passed out for a brief amount of time, injuring his left knee in the process. An MRI on Friday morning showed no structural damage and Martin is expected to avoid a stint on the disabled list, listing himself as day to day.
"I went in the sauna, stayed in for a bit too long and started feeling a bit woozy and then I went into the cold shower and stood there for a minute," Martin explained. "Somebody was changing, so I thought I would just stay in the shower another 30 seconds waiting for that person to leave, and the next thing you know I'm on the ground, my head's a bit sore. I think I dropped the shower hose on my face, and then I was on the ground.
"I got up, sat in the locker room for 10 minutes, got my bearings back and walked upstairs feeling kind of weak. And then I woke up this morning with my knee just a bit sore and just maybe aggravated an old injury from back in the day. It's already feeling better. I got some treatment on it."
Martin felt no pain in his head afterwards, citing only soreness in his left knee. A Gold Glove Award winner and four-time All-Star, Martin has hit .228 with seven home runs and 36 RBIs for the Blue Jays in his second year with the team. The Chipola College product battled stiffness in his neck earlier in the year, but he has played in 81 games for the Blue Jays this season.
Josh Thole received the start on Friday in place of Martin and will once again get the nod on Saturday to catch knuckleballer R.A. Dickey. Thole has hit .160 with a home run and five RBIs in 93 plate appearances this season.
Carrera ready to roll
Outfielder Ezequiel Carrera is an option off the bench during Friday's opener against the Mariners. The left-handed hitting Carrera has been dealing with soreness in his left Achilles' tendon and missed the past three games.
Carrera has hit .274 with four home runs and 14 RBIs as the primary right fielder with José Bautista on the DL. Manager John Gibbons opted to start the right-handed hitting Junior Lake in right field on Friday against left-hander James Paxton, while starting utility man Darwin Barney in left field for the second straight game. Carrera is expected to return to the starting lineup on Saturday.
Michael Saunders returned to the Blue Jays' lineup on Friday after missing Wednesday's game due to personal matters. Saunders spent his first six seasons with the Mariners and will be facing his former team for the first time since being traded to the Blue Jays in 2014. The first-time All-Star enters Friday's action hitting .286 with 16 home runs and 43 RBIs.