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Urshela plays short, singles in Blue Jays debut

Infielder has spent most of career at third; Toronto options Pompey; Pearce's return uncertain
MLB.com @gregorMLB

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays officially added infielder Gio Urshela to the 25-man roster prior to Saturday afternoon's 5-2 loss to the Red Sox while outfielder Dalton Pompey was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo.

Toronto acquired Urshela from Cleveland earlier this week in exchange for cash considerations. He was originally expected to report on Friday, but his arrival was briefly delayed as the 26-year-old worked through some work visa issues.

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TORONTO -- The Blue Jays officially added infielder Gio Urshela to the 25-man roster prior to Saturday afternoon's 5-2 loss to the Red Sox while outfielder Dalton Pompey was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo.

Toronto acquired Urshela from Cleveland earlier this week in exchange for cash considerations. He was originally expected to report on Friday, but his arrival was briefly delayed as the 26-year-old worked through some work visa issues.

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Urshela has spent most of his professional career at third base, but he made his Blue Jays debut at shortstop on Saturday, while Russell Martin got another start at third and Josh Donaldson got the call as the designated hitter. Urshela went 1-for-2.

"I saw him a little bit in Cleveland last year," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "The word is he can play anywhere. But I've seen it, he's a really good third baseman, I know that. Really good. But you can put him at different spots."

Urshela has appeared in 148 games in his big league career with a slash line of .225/.273/.314. His numbers in the Minors have been better, and in limited action this season for Triple-A Columbus, he hit .324 with an .837 OPS in 11 games. Urshela had to be placed on the 25-man roster because he is out of options on his contract, and he would have to pass through waivers before being sent to the Minors.

Injury updates

Outfielder Steve Pearce remains without a timeline to return from his strained oblique injury. Pearce currently is on the 10-day disabled list and has not played since May 3. He technically is eligible to return on Monday, but he has yet to resume baseball activities as the 35-year-old continues to rehab at Toronto's Minor League complex in Florida.

Video: Must C Catch: Grichuk saves run with no-look catch

The news is a bit better for outfielder Randal Grichuk, who resumed baseball activities earlier this week and continues to progress. The Blue Jays have not determined when Grichuk will begin a rehab assignment, but the club is expected to have a better idea of a timeline within the next couple of days. Grichuk likely would return to a reserve role after hitting .106/.208/.227 in 25 games for the Blue Jays earlier this season.

Shortstop Aledmys Diaz has started throwing, and he's expected to begin hitting at some point next week. Diaz last played on May 6 when he rolled his left ankle at first base while trying to run out a ground ball. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. remains Toronto's primary shortstop during Diaz's absence.

Another shot for Biagini

Blue Jays right-hander Joe Biagini is the tentative starter for Sunday's series finale against the Red Sox. Biagini was recalled from Triple-A Buffalo on Friday in a flurry of roster moves that involved placing right-hander Marcus Stroman on the 10-day DL with right shoulder fatigue. Stroman originally was scheduled to start Sunday but that outing will now belong to Biagini as long as he's not needed out of the bullpen on Saturday afternoon.

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

Toronto Blue Jays, Gio Urshela