BALTIMORE -- Adam Lind is back, and the Blue Jays are very glad to have him.
Lind was activated from the 15-day disabled list Saturday and manager John Farrell put him right back into the lineup. He had been placed on the DL with lower back stiffness on May 17, retroactive to May 8. Lind is hitting fourth as the designated hitter in Saturday's game.
"It's obviously good to have Adam Lind's name in the lineup tonight," Farrell said. "He was leading the American League in RBIs at the time. To be able to plug a four-hole hitter back in the lineup, and a left handed hitter that has had very good success, gives us that balance. It's good to see Adam back here with us."
This also gives Farrell the chance to get a powerful 3-4 combination in the middle of the lineup with Jose Bautista and Lind, something the skipper likes. Lind had a .313 average with seven homers and 27 RBI in just 32 games before going on the DL.
But Farrell also said, as he did Friday, that the Blue Jays are going to be careful with Lind at first. He'll split his time between first base and DH in the early days until the team gets a better feel for how Lind feels.
"I think that's probably the smart way to go about it, particularly as well as Juan [Rivera] has played first base," Farrell said. "We want to make sure we don't have any setbacks with Adam."
Lind said he's now got a maintenance program and will be pacing himself more. He'll limit his number of reps in pre-game work, probably taking only 15 ground balls at first, to give himself the best chance to stay healthy.
Lind went 6-for-10 on a rehab assignment with Class A Dunedin. He said he swung the bat well while down there and hopes to jump right back in.
"I hope I just take off from where I left off tonight," Lind said. "I've never done this before in a season, never been on the DL. This is new."
Farrell says Thames has 'bright future'
BALTIMORE -- Even though the Blue Jays had to option outfielder Eric Thames to Las Vegas Friday night to make room for Adam Lind, manager John Farrell had some kind words for the rookie.
"When he stays within his strike zone and doesn't chase too many pitches out of the zone, he's got a chance to be a dangerous hitter for us," Farrell said. "He's got a very bright future as a big league hitter."
Thames had a .286 average in 13 games. He finished with 12 hits in 42 at bats -- three of which were for extra bases. In addition, Thames drove in four runs.
Farrell said Thames stayed with a disciplined approach at the plate, something that's good because he's such a strong hitter. But the skipper said Thames is still growing.
"His calling card right now is his bat," Farrell said. "He's got some work to do defensively. The way he handled himself in the box and the confidence [with which] he swings the bat was very, very good to see."
McDonald not ready to return, feeling sore
BALTIMORE -- Manager John Farrell said he doesn't yet have a good idea about when infielder John McDonald will be ready to return.
McDonald was placed on the 15-day disabled list on May 28 with right hamstring problems. Farrell said that McDonald is going through baseball activities but still feels soreness, mostly at the connection where the hamstring and tendon meet.
The Blue Jays don't know when he'll be able to do a rehab assignment or come back off the disabled list.
"There's still no definitive time frame on his return," Farrell said.
McDonald had a .190 batting average when going on the disabled list and was mired in an 0-for-15 slump at that time.
Catcher J.P. Arencibia now ranks first among American League catchers in total bases (79), homers (9), extra-base hits (19) and second in slugging percentage (.516), OPS (.830) and is tied for second in doubles (8). Not bad for a rookie.
In the last eight times the Blue Jays and Orioles have met in a series, someone has swept it. The Blue Jays have done it six times, and the Orioles have done it twice. Toronto has a 19-6 record against Baltimore during that time frame.
The Blue Jays now have won six of their last eight road games and are 14-14 overall this season away from Toronto.
Jo Jo Reyes starts for the Blue Jays Sunday, and he won in his last start, ending a streak of 28 consecutive starts without a victory.
Jeff Seidel is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.