BOSTON -- Mariners right fielder Michael Saunders has been sidelined midway through his Minor League rehab stint with Triple-A Tacoma due to an illness that has already caused him to miss two games, Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon said Friday.
"He's got flu-like symptoms," McClendon said. "He will not play for two or three [more] days. He's been dehydrated."
Saunders has played 10 games with Tacoma as he works back from a strained right oblique that landed him on the disabled list on July 11, but that return already was interrupted once by paternity leave when he flew home to be with his wife for the birth of their second child.
Saunders has hit .257 with 14 walks in his 10 games so far and even before he got sick, McClendon said the six-year veteran needed to get sharper at the plate before he'd be recalled. Now he'll likely need even more time, with his 20-day stint due to run out on Aug. 26.
The Rainiers season runs through Sept. 1, and it's possible the Mariners could recall Saunders at the end of his 20 days and then ask for an extension that would allow him to continue the Minor League rehab until he's ready.