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08/02/12 2:36 AM ET
Blue Jays may use Happ in six-man rotation
By Gregor Chisholm / MLB.com
SEATTLE -- Blue Jays manager John Farrell is contemplating the idea of going to a six-man rotation following the club's off-day on Monday.
Farrell would like to find a way to insert recently acquired left-hander J.A. Happ into the starting rotation. The veteran hurler is currently pitching out of the bullpen, but that is expected to change in the relatively near future.
To accommodate a spot for Happ, the Blue Jays would either have to remove someone who is currently starting or simply bump everybody back a day through a turn in the rotation.
"The one thing we strongly consider is how far away we get from J.A.'s last start and then realistically how far he can go in his first start in the rotation," Farrell said. "Because you combine that with the return of Brandon [Morrow] at some point, where he's going to have limits on him and it's tough to have two guys in the rotation looking at 80-pitch limits. Then we're back into chasing our tail, as we've done before, where you're carrying that extra pitcher."
Happ hasn't started since July 16, when he was still a member of the Astros. Since then, he has pitched a total of five innings in three games for the Blue Jays while allowing three runs.
The 29-year-old has a strong preference to start, and the club would like to accommodate. With Brett Cecil and Aaron Laffey pitching relatively similar, Farrell has yet to decide whether one of them would be moved to the bullpen or if the club would be best served letting everyone have at least another turn.
"I don't know that there are too many drawbacks," Farrell said of the six-man rotation. "You're looking at young guys in Henderson [Alvarez's] case, you want to control the number of innings thrown, give a breather to some guys, get J.A. in the rotation, there are more positives than drawbacks for sure."
Encarnacion staying at DH to rest sore heel
SEATTLE -- Blue Jays slugger Edwin Encarnacion was limited to designated-hitter duties for the second consecutive game on Wednesday night because of a left heel injury.
The relatively minor ailment began bothering Encarnacion three days ago and has kept him from taking part in any defensive responsibilities. The hope is that additional rest as a DH will help stop the issue before it becomes more problematic.
"It's nothing that's a big problem," said Encarnacion, who went 0-for-4 in Wednesday's 5-3 loss to Seattle. "I want to take a couple of games at DH, it's feeling better.
"I'm running a lot and playing first base every day now, that's maybe the difference. I'll be all right, it's nothing big."
Encarnacion expects to remain at DH through the upcoming four-game series in Oakland. The plan would then be to get back on the field for the start of a three-game set in Florida on Tuesday.
The 29-year-old Encarnacion is currently hitting .290 with a team-high 28 home runs and 72 RBIs in 101 games this season.
Right-hander Brandon Morrow will make his second rehab start for Class A Dunedin on Friday. He is then scheduled for two appearances with Double-A New Hampshire before being eligible for a return to the big leagues.
The Blue Jays are still waiting for the results of an examination on Adam Lind's sore back. Lind was sent to the club's Minor League complex in Florida on Monday and there is no timetable for his return from the 15-day disabled list.