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Aaron Sanchez to throw off of mound soon

Your afternoon update for everything Blue Jays.

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Boston Red Sox
Aaron Sanchez throws the ball during the first inning against the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park. 
Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Aaron Sanchez is set to throw off of a mound soon as he approaches the next step in his rehab, Arden Zwelling of Sportsnet reports. Sanchez, while throwing off of flat ground consistently, has yet to experience any blister issues or tenderness on his right middle finger.

Sanchez, if he does return before the closer of the 2017 season, will pitch out of the bullpen. Given the limited number of games left, Sanchez doesn’t have much time to be stretched out and inserted into the rotation.

If Sanchez continues to struggle with his blister through 2018 and beyond, it would seem logical to move him to the bullpen permanently. With a smaller workload, he may be able to avoid the injury that has nagged him his entire career.

On the bright side, Rich Hill, who’s consistently struggled with blisters, lost a perfect game in the ninth inning on an error and a no-hitter in the tenth on a walk-off home run, the first in baseball history to lose a no-hitter in that fashion.


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In advance of Thursday’s game against the Tampa Bay Rays, the Blue Jays recalled Tom Koehler for his start and optioned Chris Rowley to the triple-A Buffalo Bisons. Koelher was acquired late last week from the Miami Marlins for Osman Gutierrez and cash.

Rowley performed well in his first two starts, giving up one and two earned runs, respectively, but struggled with walks (five in his second outing). Most recently, against the Tampa Bay Rays, Rowley gave up four earned runs over 3.1 innings.

The Boston Red Sox acquired Rajai Davis from the Oakland Athletics for minor-league outfielder Rafael Rincones yesterday. Davis is expected to fill in for Jackie Bradley Jr., out with a thumb injury.

Per Bob Nightengale, the Red Sox like the fact that Davis performs well in the postseason — he hit a crucial home run in the eighth inning of the 2016 World Series for Cleveland. However, he has a career .175/.209/.275 slash line in the postseason.

The Blue Jays beat the Rays 7-6 last night in a crazy, high-scoring affair. The Blue Jays, tying the series at one apiece, hit six home runs, the highest single-game total for Toronto since 2012 and just the 11th time in franchise history the feat has been accomplished. Despite leading 5-0 at one point, the game was tied 6-6 before the Blue Jays took the lead.

With the chance of passing the Rays in the race for the second wildcard spot, the Blue Jays conclude their series against Tampa Bay today at 1:10. Tom Koehler will make his first start as a Blue Jay against Alex Cobb, who’s returning from the 10-day disabled list (turf toe).

Follow Mark on Twitter @MarkColley.