Notes: Fasano prepared for callup
Veteran catcher went down to Triple-A and awaited his call
NEW YORK -- Sal Fasano didn't want to play in the Minor Leagues, but that didn't mean he wasn't willing to do just that. So the veteran catcher signed with the Blue Jays and caught the bus to Triple-A Syracuse.
Fasano figured that, if he performed well with the Chiefs, it'd only be a matter of time before an opportunity arose with Toronto. On Tuesday in Boston, Blue Jays catcher Gregg Zaun had his right hand broken by a foul ball -- an unfortunate event, but one that gave Fasano his chance quicker than anticipated.
"Toronto's had a history of having to use three catchers," said Fasano, sitting in the visitors' dugout at Yankee Stadium on Thursday. "I couldn't get a job. So when I got this one to play in Triple-A, I went down, got my at-bats and just got ready in case something happened. It actually worked out."
Fasano, who signed with Toronto in January, wasn't aware of what happened to Zaun until after Syracuse's game in Buffalo on Tuesday. Not long after belting his fifth home run of the year in the eighth inning, Chiefs manager Doug Davis called the 35-year-old catcher into his office to deliver the news.
In 12 games with Syracuse, Fasano hit .317 with five home runs and five RBIs. He said he's been working on a slower approach at the plate and it's paid early dividends. It was an approach that Fasano struggled to adjust to with Toronto during Spring Training, when he hit just .130 in 14 games.
"When your knees get bad, you have to make some alterations in your stance," said Fasano, who has played for eight teams in nine big-league seasons. "I had some sucess down there. Hopefully, I can carry that over up here."
Fasano is also hoping to successfully pick up where he left off with Toronto's pitching staff during the spring. He stayed with the Jays until the final day of Spring Training in order to get to know the group as well as he could.
"That's one of the perks of being in Spring Training that long," Fasano said. "A lot of people said, 'Why wouldn't you want to go down and get some at-bats?' I'd rather stay with the pitching staff. To me, that's where I'm going to benefit, and the team is going to benefit from my relationship with the pitchers."
Glaus update: Gibbons isn't ready to say whether or not third baseman Troy Glaus will be activated from the 15-day disabled list on Saturday. First, Gibbons wanted to see how Glaus' sore left heel treated him during pregame drills on Thursday at Yankee Stadium.
"He'll go out there and go through the routine, and we'll see how he feels," Gibbons said. "[We need to see] if he can run. He can swing. It'll flare up on him on and off, but he's got to be able to move laterally and be able to run the bases."
Glaus took part in batting practice and later ran in the outfield under the watchful eyes of Toronto's medical staff. The third baseman appeared to still be favoring his left heel, which has been troublesome due to a bone spur.
Under the knife: Zaun underwent surgery to repair a non-displaced fracture in his right hand Thursday morning in Baltimore, and Gibbons said everything went well during the operation.
Zaun, who was placed on the 15-day DL on Wednesday, had two pins inserted into his hand, which was struck by a foul ball during Tuesday's win over the Red Sox. Gibbons said that Zaun -- expected to miss six to eight weeks -- will likely rejoin the team in Toronto on Friday.
Hello 'moto: The dream is still alive for 36-year-old pitcher Jo Matumoto. The Blue Jays signed the Brazilian pitcher to a Minor League contract during Spring Training after he spent several years playing in the Japanese industrial leagues and for Brazil's national team.
Entering Thursday, Matumoto had yet to allow a run this year, turning in 9 1/3 scoreless innings over six games for Double-A New Hampshire. The southpaw had seven strikeouts versus one walk and has given up just three hits. On Wednesday, he picked up his first win in North America one day after earning his first save.
Did you know? Dating back to the 2003 season, Toronto ace Roy Halladay ranks first among Majors Leaguers in winning percentage (mininum of 20 starts) prior to the All-Star break. Over that span, Halladay has gone 47-14 for a .770 winning percentage.
Coming up: Toronto right-hander Josh Towers (1-2, 3.44 ERA) is scheduled to take the mound in the opener of a four-game set against Texas at 7:07 p.m. ET on Friday at Rogers Centre. The Rangers will counter with righty Robinson Tejeda (2-1, 3.55 ERA).
Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.