Blue Jays’ Guerrero Jr. sitting out vs. Astros on Saturday

Watch as Vlad Guerrero Jr. is hit in the hand by a fastball that seems to have fazed the Blue Jays’ player. Guerrero Jr. tried to continue on but was later removed from the game.

HOUSTON – Vladimir Guerrero Jr., felt relief after X-Rays on his left hand came back negative but was out of the Toronto Blue Jays lineup Saturday as he waits for the pain and swelling to subside.

The 20-year-old third baseman was struck on the bottom of his left hand by a 96.3 m.p.h. Gerrit Cole fastball in the first inning of Friday’s 15-2 beat down from the Houston Astros. He initially stayed in the game but left in the second inning.

"When it hit me, it didn’t feel that bad, I thought I’d be OK, just a bruise, that was it," Guerrero said through interpreter Hector Lebron. "But then the next inning, when I went to the field, I couldn’t close my glove very well. That’s when I worried a little bit."

Testing followed and "I felt relieved, it was great the X-Rays were negative," said Guerrero. "Now I guess I’m going to take a couple of days off and keep working hard and come back ready."

Guerrero said the hand felt "very good" Saturday and he received treatment before taking batting practice. After a 7-2 loss to the Astros, Charlie Montoyo said Guerrero "should be able to be in" Sunday’s series finale.

A return hinges on "pain (tolerance)," said Guerrero. "If I don’t feel any pain in the hand, I’ll be alright to come back 100 per cent."

Meanwhile, the Blue Jays activated Nick Kingham after he joined the team Friday and felt fine after a bullpen session, optioning lefty Thomas Pannone to triple-A Buffalo to make room for him.

Montoyo said for Kingham will fill the long relief role Pannone had been in and said, "we’ll see," when asked if it was possible he be stretched out to start.

Edwin Jackson for now will remain in the rotation, with Montoyo suggesting the Blue Jays could use an opener in front of him again, depending on the bullpen’s usage ahead of his next scheduled outing.

In addition to updating Guerrero Jr.’s status, the Blue Jays provided injury updates on the following injured players:

• Ryan Borucki, who’s been on the 60-day injured list since April with left elbow inflammation, is slated to throw his first live bullpen on Saturday.

• Clay Buchholz, who was transferred to the 60-day injured list last week with right shoulder inflammation, continues to work on his strengthening program. The earliest he’d be eligible to return for Toronto is July 7.

• David Phelps continues to recovery from Tommy John surgery and will get one more day of rest prior to being activated off of the injured list.

• John Axford has been able to throw from up to 90 feet with no issues. He’s currently recovering from a stress reaction injury in his elbow.

• Dalton Pompey is participating in baseball activities and will be re-evaluated next week. The Canadian outfielder has been out since spring training with a concussion.

• Devon Travis isn’t partaking in baseball activities yet as he continues his lower-body strengthening program. The infielder had surgery in March to repair a small meniscus tear in his left knee, but has experienced setbacks during his recovery.

• Jacob Waguespack will pitch two innings for triple-A Buffalo on Sunday. The right-hander was placed on the 10-day injured list on May 29 with right shoulder soreness.

• Julian Merryweather will partake in live batting practice today, then progress to game action next week. The 27-year-old is still recovering from Tommy John surgery, which he underwent in March 2018.

When submitting content, please abide by our submission guidelines, and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account. Sportsnet reserves the right to close a story’s comment section at any time.