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Garcia to be activated for start on Saturday

Smith taking advantage of big league opportunity
MLB.com @gregorMLB

TORONTO -- Blue Jays left-hander Jaime Garcia is set to come off the 10-day disabled list in time to make Saturday's start against the Phillies.

Garcia threw a side session at Rogers Centre before Thursday's 8-1 loss to the Angels, and he received final clearance to make the outing. The 31-year-old has been out since May 15 because of left shoulder inflammation, but in the end he will have missed just one start.

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TORONTO -- Blue Jays left-hander Jaime Garcia is set to come off the 10-day disabled list in time to make Saturday's start against the Phillies.

Garcia threw a side session at Rogers Centre before Thursday's 8-1 loss to the Angels, and he received final clearance to make the outing. The 31-year-old has been out since May 15 because of left shoulder inflammation, but in the end he will have missed just one start.

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"He felt really good today," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said. "So he'll be good to go Saturday."

Toronto likely won't announce the corresponding roster move until after Friday night's game against the Phillies. Right-hander Joe Biagini was the tentative starter for Saturday's game, but it's possible he will now move to the bullpen as a long reliever. Jake Petricka and Deck McGuire are on the bubble to stick with the big league roster.

Garcia got off to a rough start this season with a 6.28 ERA through his first eight outings. Command has been an issue, as he's walked 21 over 38 2/3 innings.

Video: LAA@TOR: Smith Jr. belts his 1st MLB home run

Opportunity knocks for Smith

A pair of injuries created the opportunity for Dwight Smith Jr., and now the 25-year-old is doing what he can to make the most of it.

The Blue Jays outfielder came through with the first home run of his career during the sixth inning of Thursday's loss to the Angels. According to Statcast™, the solo shot to right field was projected to travel 361 feet and it left his bat at 96 mph. He's batting .318 with a .991 OPS in 10 games with the big league club.

Smith got the start in left field and hit leadoff in place of Curtis Granderson, who received the day off. He now has four extra-base hits in a couple of stints with the Blue Jays as he continues to fill in for outfielders Steve Pearce and Randal Grichuk, who are on the 10-day disabled list.

"It definitely felt really good off the bat," Smith said. "It felt like I barely swung. I tried not to do too much, because in my first two at-bats I kind of pulled off the ball. I just wanted to stay through it."

The native of Georgia is the son of former Major Leaguer Dwight Smith, who spent eight years in the big leagues with stints in Chicago, California, Baltimore and Atlanta.

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, Jaime Garcia