APRIL 8: Springer has a low-grade strain, according to manager Charlie Montoyo. He’s unlikely to debut until at at least April 15, Scott Mitchell of TSN tweets.

APRIL 7: Blue Jays center fielder George Springer looked as if he could make his 2021 debut Thursday, but there’s no longer a chance of that happening. Springer felt tightness in his right quad while running the bases on Tuesday and has undergone an MRI, Gregor Chisholm of the Toronto Star was among those to report. The Jays are still awaiting the results of Springer’s MRI.

When Toronto signed Springer to the largest guarantee in free agency – a six year, $150MM pact – the hope was obviously that he would be part of their lineup beginning Opening Day. But the three-time All-Star suffered a Grade 2 left oblique strain during spring training, which has prevented him from debuting this year, and this latest issue will keep him out for at least a little more time. Springer appeared in 140 or more games in each season with the Astros from 2016-18, but he missed 40 contests in 2019 and sat out nine times during the abbreviated 2020 campaign.

The Blue Jays planned to enter the season with Teoscar Hernandez and Lourdes Gurriel Jr. flanking Springer in the outfield. Sans Springer, they have mostly turned to Randal Grichuk in center. Grichuk has gotten off to a hot start and helped offset Springer’s absence, though there’s no doubt the latter is the better option when he’s healthy.