Blue Jays place Aaron Sanchez on the DL again as blister-related issues continue

Nick Ashbourne

After lasting just one inning in Sunday’s game, Toronto Blue Jays starter Aaron Sanchez is heading to the disabled list once again due to a persistent blister issue.

Sanchez returned from the 10-day DL to face the Tampa Bay Rays after having his nail worked on by a specialist, but was only able to throw fastballs in a single frame as the middle nail on his right hand split open.

“I looked down and it was bleeding,” he recalled after the game. “I found my nail split the opposite way they cut in the procedure.”

That Sanchez is returning to the shelf hardly qualifies as a surprise. Following Sunday’s contest Blue Jays manager John Gibbons used humour to evade questions about whether Sanchez could make his next start.

The laid-back manager explained that the nail had been cut and he’d be fine then surveyed the reporters and joked, “There’s got to be a manicurist in this crowd, I would think.”

When asked to clarify what it meant to say Sanchez would be fine, he sidestepped good-naturedly.

“He is going to be fine,” Gibbons said. “He’s a good-looking young man, he’s going to be fine in life.”

Aaron Sanchez can’t seem to catch a break when it comes to blisters. (Fred Thornhill/CP)

For those reading between the lines it was relatively obvious that Sanchez was going to be returning to the shelf for a time, and here were are.

Completing the transaction is the recall of right-handed reliever Danny Barnes from Triple-A Buffalo. Barnes has pitched 4.2 innings of scoreless ball for the Blue Jays this season and provides valuable depth until the team needs another starter.

Because of the team’s off-day on Thursday the Blue Jays have the ability to kick that problem down the road slightly. However, when someone is needed to take Sanchez’s turn, it will be an interesting choice for Toronto.

Casey Lawrence is on the 40-man roster, but his 8.78 ERA in three starts likely hasn’t inspired a great deal of confidence. If they are willing to designate Lawrence — or perhaps any extra reliever like Leonel Campos — for assignment, then the team can reach for a Buffalo Bisons southpaw like T.J. House or Brett Oberholtzer.  House has been the most dynamic of the duo, posting a 1.64 ERA in four starts while striking out 28 hitters in 22 innings.

For now, Barnes will join an overstuffed nine-man bullpen, to go with an undermanned three-man bench and four-man rotation as the wounded Blue Jays begin May.