Blue Jays manager doesn't expect Tulowitzki OK for opener

Toronto Blue Jays Troy Tulowitzki leans on a batting cage at spring training in Dunedin, Fla. on Tuesday, February 20, 2018. Blue Jays manager John Gibbons says he isn't counting on having shortstop Tulowitzki in the lineup for opening day.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn

DUNEDIN, Fla. - Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons says he isn't counting on having shortstop Troy Tulowitzki in the lineup for opening day.

Tulowitzki has been slowed by a bone spur in his right heel and hasn't played in any spring training games. The five-time All-Star didn't play after July 28 last year after injuring his right ankle.

"I don't expect he'll be ready," Gibbons said Sunday. "But he's moving in the right direction, so who knows?"

The Blue Jays open on March 29 at home against the New York Yankees. If Tulowitzki can't play, Aledmys Diaz and Yangervis Solarte are potential replacements.

The 33-year-old Tulowitzki batted .249 with seven home runs and 26 RBIs in 66 games last season. Sidelined by injuries, he hasn't played more than 131 games in any of the last six seasons.


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