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Rajai Davis #11 of the Toronto Blue Jays bats during MLB game action against the Baltimore Orioles July 27, 2011 at Rogers Centre in Toronto. (Brad White/Getty Images)
Rajai Davis #11 of the Toronto Blue Jays bats during MLB game action against the Baltimore Orioles July 27, 2011 at Rogers Centre in Toronto. (Brad White/Getty Images)

Jays' outfield getting crowded with Rasmus joining Add to ...

With Colby Rasmus expected to assume his new role as the starting centrefielder for the Toronto Blue Jays Thursday night against the Baltimore Orioles the American League club will have a decision to make on Rajai Davis.

Davis been Toronto's starting centrefielder all season.

In Wednesday's 3-0 victory over the Orioles, Davis has now started 69 games in centre and six additional games in right field.

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But that's all about to change with the blockbuster trade that landed Rasmus, considered one of the game's top young outfielders, from the St. Louis Cardinals.

"Colby was brought here to play everyday," manager John Farrell said unequivocally following Wednesday's victory when talking about Rasmus' role with his new team. "And with all due respect to other outfielders that are here...until we sit down and talk with them directly we just wanted to go out and focus on tonight's game first before any of the guys traded for arrived."

When it was suggested to Davis that the Blue Jays outfield is about to become a bit more crowded now with Rasmus in town, the speedy outfielder just gave a little smile.

"Oh that's great, a great addition," Davis said. "Young talent, he's got power, got the ability to hit. That's a good addition for us."

Davis said he wasn't concerned that Rasmus' arrival will mean less playing time for him in the outfield.

"How many bases is he stealing?" came his response. "I don't think that affects me much. I think I'm just going to go out there and do what I do and we'll let management decide what happens.

"But with the way I feel, there's not many guys who are able to do what I do. So it doesn't really affect me. Whatever happens, it happens. I don't really worry about that stuff. It's all for making this team better."

Davis stole two more bases Wednesday night in Toronto's victory, giving him 31 on the year and placing him among the leaders in that category in the American League.

Rasmus has stolen five while playing for the St. Louis Cardinals.

It is with the bat that Rasmus is most dangerous.

Although his batting average is currently .245, that's 30 points lower than last season when he came into his own, cranking out 23 home runs along the way.

Davis, who went 1-for-3 on Wednesday with a walk, is now hitting .239 on the season.

Davis' on-base percentage heading into the game was .267 compared to .332 for Rasmus.

Farrell said the addition of Rasmus will allow the Blue Jays to "strengthen" themselves in centrefield with a player who can hit for above average power and is a left-handed bat to boot.

 

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