The Toronto Blue Jays were at the .500 mark with hopes of making a run at the postseason when Jose Bautista got hurt.
More than two months and a considerable drop in the standings later, Toronto hopes its slugger can provide a much-needed jolt in the lineup.
Bautista is expected to return as the slumping Blue Jays visit the Baltimore Orioles in the opener of a three-game series Friday night.
Toronto was 45-45 and very much in contention for one of the AL's wild-card spots before Bautista sprained his left wrist in a loss to the New York Yankees on July 16.
The Blue Jays (56-68) have since gone 11-23 and hit .229 as a team, and they've lost five straight and 19 of 24 following Thursday's 3-2, 11-inning loss to Detroit.
They've scored more than three runs in only five of those contests, and Colby Rasmus endured an 0-for-26 slump before his fourth-inning single.
"Everyone here knows the battles we've had, the struggles we've had currently on the offensive side, but that doesn't t...