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05/21/08 8:39 PM ET

Eckstein suffers minor setback

After feeling soreness in hip, shortstop to continue rehab

TORONTO -- David Eckstein's comeback from the disabled list is going to take slightly longer than the Blue Jays anticipated. On Tuesday, Eckstein experienced a minor setback in his recovery from a strained right hip flexor.

The Jays had hoped Eckstein would be ready to be activated from the 15-day DL in time for Thursday's game against the Angels, but the shortstop felt some soreness one day after making a rehab appearance with Class A Dunedin on Monday. That being the case, Eckstein rested on Tuesday and again on Wednesday.

"He came back the next day and he was a little tender," Toronto manager John Gibbons said. "We just want to make sure that's gone. There's still 4 1/2 months left in the season. If you aggravate it again now, you never know what that does to you."

Toronto plans on having Eckstein make at least two or three more rehab appearances with Dunedin, beginning on Thursday. If Eckstein is able to bounce back without any issues after playing in a few games in a row, the Jays will then activate him from the DL.

Gibbons added that he isn't sure where Eckstein will slot into the batting order upon his return. Outfielder Brad Wilkerson has been serving as the Jays' leadoff hitter -- a role Eckstein filled earlier this season. It's likely that Eckstein would slide back into the No. 9 hole, which is where he was hitting at the time he was sidelined.

Eckstein injured his right hip while diving for a ball during Toronto's game against Tampa Bay on May 6 at Rogers Centre. In the same game, the Jays also lost shortstop John McDonald to a sprained right ankle. McDonald, who is also currently on the DL, is due to begin a rehab assignment sometime within the next week.

The Jays also have a pair of pitchers -- right-handers Brian Wolfe and Jeremy Accardo -- on the DL. Wolfe, who was shelved on April 17 with a right triceps strain, has thrown in a couple of simulated games and will need to appear in a few rehab outings before rejoining the Jays.

Gibbons said it could be "another week or two" before Wolfe is ready to move back into Toronto's bullpen, which entered Wednesday with an American League-best 3.14 ERA. Accardo -- sent to the DL with a strained right forearm on May 10 -- will likely require even more time, considering he has yet to resume throwing.

Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.