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September return for Aaron Sanchez becomes more likely

Your morning update for everything Blue Jays.

Toronto Blue Jays v Boston Red Sox
 Aaron Sanchez warms up before a game against the Boston Red Sox on July 19th, 2017.
Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

Coming ever closer to a September return, Aaron Sanchez threw off of flat ground yesterday morning, the first time he’s thrown since his last start on July 19th against the Red Sox.

“Ideally we get him back in September,” John Gibbons told Mike Wilner of Sportsnet. As expected, Sanchez would be pitching out of the bullpen should he return in 2017.

“This is probably the first time I’ve felt the most normal in terms of everything put together,” Sanchez told the Toronto Star. “There’s times before when I would play catch and I’d be maybe a little bit tentative right at release point. Today I felt 100 times better than I ever have.

“I was pain-free,” Sanchez continued. “Everything felt good, now it’s on the progression. I’m not going to put a timetable on it. Just taking it how I feel and find out what’s best for me.”

Yesterday, the Blue Jays acquired Tom Koehler from the Miami Marlins for minor league pitcher Osman Gutierrez, the team announced. The Blue Jays have yet to determine whether Koehler will report to Toronto or triple-A Buffalo.

Koehler posted a 7.62 ERA and 1.725 WHIP in 12 major-league starts with the Marlins, but performed better in his eight minor-league appearances in triple-A. He collected an ERA of 2.16.

Gutierrez, born in Nicaragua, simply put, hasn’t had a good season. With the Lansing Lugnuts, Gutierrez posted a 7.85 ERA over 18 starts.

Mike Ohlman cleared waivers and was outrighted to triple-A Buffalo, the Blue Jays announced yesterday.

Surprise: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is still tearing up the competition in high-A Dunedin. He’s hit a home run in three consecutive games, and in 17 August games, Guerrero has posted a slash line of .387/.480/.677.

The Blue Jays lost their second of a three-game series against the Chicago Cubs yesterday, falling 4-3 against Jose Quintana, who pitched six innings of two-run ball with eight strikeouts. Nick Tepesch, starting for the Blue Jays, only lasted 3.2 innings, but coupled with Danny Barnes, Toronto’s pitching kept the game tied until both starters were out of the game.

Toronto will wrap up their series against the Cubs with Marco Estrada on the hill, hoping to return to his prior form after giving up six earned runs on August 15th. Kyle Hendricks is starting for Chicago.

Follow Mark on Twitter @MarkColley.