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Blue Jays' Sanchez hopes to throw on Sunday

MLB.com

TORONTO -- Blue Jays starter Aaron Sanchez is tentatively scheduled to play catch on Sunday, which would mark the first time he's thrown a baseball since hitting the 10-day disabled list on May 20.

This is Sanchez's third stint on the DL this season as he continues to deal with blister issues on his right middle finger.

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TORONTO -- Blue Jays starter Aaron Sanchez is tentatively scheduled to play catch on Sunday, which would mark the first time he's thrown a baseball since hitting the 10-day disabled list on May 20.

This is Sanchez's third stint on the DL this season as he continues to deal with blister issues on his right middle finger.

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"I saw him today and he looked really good," said Toronto manager John Gibbons prior to Friday's game against the Yankees. "It's almost completely gone."

Now that left-handers J.A. Happ and Francisco Liriano have both returned to the rotation, Sanchez remains the one missing piece from Toronto's season-opening group of five. The 24-year-old has posted a 3.33 ERA over his 24 1/3 innings so far this season, but has been forced to stray from his curveball at times due to the recurring blister.

Gibbons said that Sanchez will "definitely" need a rehab assignment once the righty is recovered. In his last outing, on May 19, Sanchez threw 93 pitches over six innings, allowing three earned runs on six hits and striking out four.

Notes

Russell Martin is dealing with a neck issue that kept him out of Friday's lineup against the Yankees, but Gibbons says that it is not related to a previous nerve issue in Martin's shoulder and neck area that required a stint on the disabled list earlier this season.

• Pitcher Glenn Sparkman began his rehab assignment on Thursday with Class A Advanced Dunedin. From that first outing, the Blue Jays have 30 days to build Sparkman back up before making a decision with their Rule 5 Draft pick from this past offseason. Sparkman threw 3 1/3 innings on Thursday, using 57 pitches (40 strikes) and striking out three.

If the Blue Jays elect not to add Sparkman to their 25-man roster at the end of his rehab assignment, the Rule 5 guidelines dictate that he must be offered back to his original team, Kansas City, for a fee of $25,000.

Outfielder Dalton Pompey continued his rehab in that game for Dunedin, going 0-for-2 with two walks out of the leadoff spot as the team's DH.

Keegan Matheson is a reporter for MLB.com based in Toronto.

Toronto Blue Jays, Aaron Sanchez