Munenori Kawasaki, whose ebullient personality earned him legions of fans when he was with the Toronto Blue Jays last season, is rejoining the Major League Baseball team.
The Blue Jays announced on Tuesday that they have recalled the Japanese-born infielder from their Triple-A affiliate in Buffalo and will join the team in time for Tuesday night’s game in Minnesota against the Twins.
An injury replacement last year when shortstop Jose Reyes was sidelined with an ankle injury, Kawasaki is once again an emergency call-up after Maicer Izturis injured his knee.
Izturis tripped on the dugout steps in Baltimore on Sunday and immediately felt something go in his left knee.
The Blue Jays said that Izturis suffered a torn lateral collateral ligament that will require surgery. He could wind up missing the rest of the season.
The club said that Izturis, a second baseman who was off to a hot start both defensively and offensively, hitting .286 after 11 games, will seek a second medical opinion before scheduling the surgery.
Kawasaki played 96 games for the Blue Jays last season. He had a .229 batting average with one homer and 24 RBIs.
In eight games playing for the Bisons so far this season, Kawasaki has posted a .240 batting average with one double.
Also Tuesday, right-hander Marcus Walden was designated for assignment and right-hander Jeremy Jeffress cleared waivers and was outrighted to the Bisons.