Blister will cost Stroman next start

Paulino joins Toronto bullpen, long-term plan is for rotation

September 5th, 2018

TORONTO -- The future is still unclear for , who's battling a blister on his right middle finger.

Manager John Gibbons said the 27-year-old will not make his scheduled start on Sunday, and the team will instead go with Thomas Pannone, who's made just two Major League starts this season.

Stroman lasted just 1 2/3 innings in his last outing on Monday. He surrendered four runs on six hits against the Rays before being pulled due to the blister. It was his first start since he was placed on the 10-day disabled list with a separate blister injury.

Pannone is 1-1 in his two starts. He allowed one hit over seven innings in his first Major League start on Aug. 22 against the Orioles, but he struggled in his second start, allowing seven runs in just 3 1/3 innings, also against Baltimore. He's posted a 4.58 ERA across 17 2/3 innings with Toronto this year.

Paulino joins Blue Jays

The Blue Jays added another one of their top prospects to the active roster prior to their game Wednesday night against the Rays.

, the Blue Jay's No. 19 prospect per MLB Pipeline, joined the club in Toronto after being activated from the Minor League disabled list. The 24-year-old right-hander came over along with and Hector Perez as part of the package from Houston for closer prior to July's non-waiver Trade Deadline.

"To be honest, I was kind of happy [about the trade] because I felt like I was stuck out there," Paulino said through a translator. "I felt like I couldn't go anywhere, so I knew I needed a fresh start."

After making six starts last year in Houston, Paulino was suspended for a positive performance-enhancing drug test on July 1, 2017. He finished with a 6.52 ERA in the Majors and a 4.50 ERA in three Minor League starts. He started seven games in the Astros' Minor League system this season, posting a 4.67 ERA before being placed on the disabled list with right shoulder discomfort on May 25.

The 6-foot-7 Paulino has a plus fastball that sits in the mid-90s, along with a breaking ball and a changeup, according to MLB Pipeline. He's a high-strikeout pitcher who has averaged nine strikeouts per nine innings throughout his career, without many walks.

The Blue Jays plan to use Paulino out of the bullpen, but his future will likely be in the rotation.

"He's got a good arm," Gibbons said. "He's a big dude."