Michael Saunders out until break

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Toronto Blue Jays left fielder Michael Saunders stepped on a sprinkler while shagging fly balls Wednesday, tearing cartilage in his left knee and sidelining him until the All-Star break.

General manager Alex Anthopoulos said Thursday that surgery is likely, but Saunders will seek a second opinion.

Saunders said he felt a pop after stepping on a sprinkler head while going for a ball at the team's training facility.

"I just tried to walk off the field and not draw any attention to myself, then when I got into the training room, my knee felt like it was getting tight on the inside," Saunders said. "I've never had any issues with my knees, so that's when I knew that something was wrong."

Sanders was on crutches Thursday.

The 28-year-old was acquired by the Blue Jays in December from Seattle for pitcher J.A. Happ and was projected to be a starter. Saunders hit .273 with eight home runs and 34 RBIs in 78 games with the Mariners last season, when he made two trips to the disabled list due to shoulder and oblique injuries.

Anthopoulos said the team will look internally for a replacement but is open to a trade or free-agent signing.

"I actually started making some calls last night with respect to seeing who else could be out there," Anthopoulos said. "There are some teams out there with some outfield depth. If we do something, it will be toward the end of spring. We'll see what we have internally first."

Anthopoulos said Saunders could return earlier than expected if there are no complications.

"It is just one of those things,'' Anthopoulos said. "Bad luck, and a tough loss, but we'll get through it and he will be back. We're still going to have him for quite a bit of time.''