Blue Jays 1B coach Budzinski to step away from team after death of daughter

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The Toronto Blue Jays announced Sunday that first base coach Mark Budzinski will be away from the team after the passing of his eldest daughter Julia.

“The Budzinskis have been part of our Blue Jays family over the last four seasons. This devastating loss is felt by our entire organization and we grieve alongside Bud and his family,” said Blue Jays GM Ross Atkins in a statement. “I have known Bud for more than 25 years and have always admired his commitment as a dad and husband first. He is loved and well-respected by our entire clubhouse and holds a special place in all our hearts.”

The Blue Jays organization added: “Our thoughts and prayers are with Mark and Monica, and their children Josh and Lily, at this time.”

Budzinski left during the third inning of the second game of Saturday’s doubleheader against the Tampa Bay Rays. The Blue Jays informed via statement that he was “dealing with a personal matter” and was replaced by bullpen catcher Luis Hurtado.

Blue Jays manager Charlie Montoyo also briefly left the game, replaced by bench coach John Schneider, but returned to the dugout.

Budzinski joined the Blue Jays in 2018 after working with Cleveland’s organization.

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