Blue Jays plan to occasionally skip Aaron Sanchez in pitching rotation

Ross Houston
August 14, 2016

Blue Jays: RHP Aaron Sanchez (11-2, 2.85) lost at Kansas City in his previous start, his first defeat since April 22 against Oakland.

"He probably had the best curveball I've seen him have consistently, " manager John Gibbons said.

Toronto originally planned to shift Sanchez to the bullpen to preserve his arm.

The Blue Jays will counter with right-hander Marcus Stroman (8-5, 4.76 ERA) who will be trying for his first win since July 20.

Sanchez is due to make 23rd start of the season against the visiting Houston Astros on Saturday afternoon.

He has never thrown more than 92.1 innings in a season and he is already at 145.1 this year, his first as a full-time starting pitcher. Blue Jays LH Francisco Liriano (6-11, 5.34) Musgrove has been very impressive in his first two major league appearances, permitting one run and six hits over 11 1/3 innings combined.

Houston Astros' George Springer reacts in the dugout after scoring against the Toronto Blue Jays in the fifth inning of a baseball game in Toronto, Friday, Aug. 12, 2016.

Encarnacion's 32nd home run tied him with Baltimore's Mark Trumbo for the major league lead.

With a couple of off days in the coming two weeks, along with a recently instituted six-man rotation (from the usual five), the Blue Jays have plenty of options on how to organize things in order to ensure additional rest for Sanchez.

Roberto Osuna pitched a scoreless ninth for his 26th save of the season.

Edwin Encarnacion and Michael Saunders reached on back-to-back singles with one out, ending McHugh's day after 5 1/3 innings.

Gattis followed with a 367 ft. fly ball to right that was nothing but a loud out, and A.J. Reed hit a 390 ft. ball to left for his second double of the game.

After James Hoyt replaced McHugh, Troy Tulowitzki's groundout to third pushed the runners to second and third.

"To close games on a good ballclub at that age is unheard of", Gibbons said. Two batters later, with Hoyt on in relief, Martin knocked in his second homer of the month giving Toronto a 4-2 lead. He allowed two runs and five hits. "I'm looking for more, " said Osuna, whose 22nd birthday is not until February.

While chasing Donaldson's foul popup in the third, Houston 1B Reed crashed into a police officer sitting by the stands, knocking her to the ground. Neither Reed nor the police officer was injured, and both laughed off the incident.

The Houston Astros hope to build off a special series with the bats and set sail again in their quest for a second straight playoff spot when they visit the first-place Toronto Blue Jays on Friday in the first of three contests. Bagwell also holds the record for the longest streak, reaching safely in 51 straight road games in 1999.

Liriano then got Marwin Gonzalez to line out. Veteran left-hander Francisco Liriano will try to cool off the Astros, who will send promising rookie Joe Musgrove to the hill in the opener.TV: 7:07 p.m. ET, ROOT (Houston), Sportsnet One, TVA Sports (Toronto) PITCHING MATCHUP: Astros RH Joe Musgrove (0-0, 0.79 ERA) vs. Grilli finished the inning by striking out Correa. He's winless in three outings.

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