04/18/09 12:20 AM ET
Barrett exits vs. A's with injury
Backstop's status uncertain after hurting right shoulder
By Jordan Bastian / MLB.com
Following Toronto's 8-5 loss to Oakland, Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston still hadn't learned just how serious Barrett's injury was, though it's likely that the catcher is headed to the disabled list. That being the case, Toronto will need to promote a catcher from within its system to serve as the backup to Rod Barajas.
"We'll probably have something for you guys tomorrow," said Gaston, who discussed the situation with general manager J.P. Ricciardi after meeting with reporters. "Hopefully, we'll get some news on what's going on with him. We certainly will have to make a move, if he can't go."
With two outs in the top of the fourth, Toronto left-hander David Purcey threw a wild pitch with Bobby Crosby -- who had hit a three-run triple -- on third base, sending the ball skipping past Barrett. The veteran catcher bolted toward the first-base dugout to retrieve the ball, falling while throwing to Purcey at home plate.
After relaying the ball -- not in enough time to stop Crosby from scoring -- Barrett fell hard on his right side, landing on the ground near the on-deck circle and slamming his shoulder into the weighted donut. Gaston and head trainer George Poulis quickly made their way over to Barrett before pulling the catcher from the game.
While heading back to the clubouse with Poulis, Barrett grimaced in pain and kept his right arm close to his body. It was an unfortunate turn of events for the 32-year-old catcher, who made Toronto's Opening Day squad after overcoming a career-threatening injury last season.
Barrett fouled a pitch off his face in a July 2 game against the Rockies. After the Padres placed him on the disabled list, where Barrett remained for the rest of the season, the catcher was forced to undergo surgery to repair multiple facial and nasal fractures. Earlier in the season, Barrett missed time with a sprained right elbow.
Barrett -- a veteran of 11 seasons in the big leagues -- was signed to a Minor League contract by the Blue Jays in December. This spring he competed against catcher Raul Chavez for the backup role to Barajas, who replaced Barrett in Friday's game. Chavez was sent to Triple-A Las Vegas, and is the top candidate to receive the call from the Minors.
If there is not enough time to fly Chavez to Toronto from the West Coast for the Blue Jays' afternoon tilt against the A's on Saturday, the club could consider its options at Double-A. Catcher Brian Jeroloman -- the top defensive catching prospect in the Jays' system -- is currently the everyday starter behind the plate with New Hampshire.
Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.