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Biagini gets nod in first spring game

MLB.com @gregorMLB

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Right-hander Joe Biagini will get the start when the Blue Jays host the Phillies in their first Grapefruit League game of the year on Friday afternoon at Dunedin Stadium.

Biagini is tenatively scheduled to throw a couple of innings in his first official outing of the year. The 27-year-old currently is not competing for a starting job with the Blue Jays, but he remains a candidate for the bullpen.

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Right-hander Joe Biagini will get the start when the Blue Jays host the Phillies in their first Grapefruit League game of the year on Friday afternoon at Dunedin Stadium.

Biagini is tenatively scheduled to throw a couple of innings in his first official outing of the year. The 27-year-old currently is not competing for a starting job with the Blue Jays, but he remains a candidate for the bullpen.

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Right-hander Danny Barnes is scheduled to start Toronto's second game of the spring on Saturday afternoon against the Tigers. Barnes is a full-time reliever and the Blue Jays are not stretching him out, but instead giving him one inning before handing it over to other relievers as part of a bullpen day.

Travis full participant

Blue Jays second baseman Devon Travis is not expected to appear in the Blue Jays' first couple of games this spring, but it should not be very long before he returns to action. Travis has been a full participant in all of Toronto's infield drills this week, and he appears to be slightly ahead of schedule following last year's knee surgery.

"Taking it day-by-day, but I'm just so excited to be out there," Travis said. "I'm excited to come in and be a baseball player and not be a rehabber. It's a really nice thing."

Walker on the mend

Pitching coach Pete Walker is feeling better a day after a scary incident at the Bobby Mattick Training Center. Walker was leaning up against the batting cage when Yangervis Solarte fouled off a ball behind the plate. The protective screen had a bit of give to it, and as a result, Walker's arm was struck with full force. Walker dropped to the ground, and momentarily blacked out, as teammates and coaches ran to his aid.

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Walker was taken to a local hospital for further tests but X-rays came back negative. The former big league pitcher has now been cleared to return, but he wanted to be cautious, and as a result stayed behind to work on pitching schedules instead of watching the Blue Jays' pitchers work out on Wednesday morning.

"Pete is doing alright," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "I saw him yesterday afternoon when he got back from the hospital. They checked him out and everything seemed fine. He just doesn't take a blow very well. He stayed back today because he was still feeling a little bit off."

Not done shopping

It's still very likely that the Blue Jays will add some more depth to the bullpen before the start of the season. How likely? Well according to Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins, it's "probably 90 percent." Toronto has at least a few million left to spend in this year's budget and is looking for either another setup man or a long reliever.

"It's pretty likely," Atkins said of adding another arm. "Is it 90? Probably 90 percent."

The hesitation

Marcus Stroman is well known for frequently using a hesitation in his delivery, and on Wednesday morning, closer Roberto Osuna tried to follow suit. Osuna was tossing a live batting practice session when he unveiled a hesitation in his delivery as well. It didn't work so well, as outfielder Randal Grichuk promptly hit one over the wall.

Video: Blue Jays pitching coach on Osuna's offseason

Stroman also tossed a live batting practice session on Wednesday morning and he unleashed a quick pitch sidearm to Ezequiel Carrera. Stroman has talked about possibly dropping down from time to time this season to continue giving hitters a different look. "Every time I catch that guy, I see something that I've never seen before," remarked catcher Luke Maile.

Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast.

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