Blue Jays' Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Withdraws From WBC With Injury

When it comes to spring training for an established star like Toronto Blue Jays slugger Vladimir Guerrero Jr., all you really want to see is an escape from the Grapefruit League schedule with no injuries. So when an MRI Friday night revealed inflammation in his right knee, his trip to the World Baseball Classic was cancelled.

Thankfully, the imaging didn't reveal any structural issues, said Blue Jays manager John Schneider. And rather than any real injury concern going forward, the manager said of his pulling out of the WBC, "I think it's more Vladdy understanding his importance to this team and his teammates.

"I think putting the team at the forefront is what drove him. He's frustrated he can't play. It's a cool thing to do. But he understands the team is going to come before the WBC. So, we'll take it a day at a time and get him back out there."

Guerrero left the Jays' Friday game with discomfort in the knee, prompting the MRI. Vladdy was leading the team with five RBIs this spring heading into Saturday's play.

The Jays will ensure he just rests the knee over the next couple of days, as a precaution. “He’s just doing treatment today and staying off of his feet,” said Schneider prior to Saturday’s game in Lakeland. “We’re just hoping that’s the best thing for him right now.”

The Dominican Republic team still features a formidable roster, even without Guerrero, featuring the likes of Julio Rodriguez, Juan Soto, Jose Ramirez, Manny Machado, and Rafael Devers. 

Photo: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports