Out since May 9 with a strained quadriceps, Nationals first baseman Adam LaRoche has been cleared to begin a minor-league rehab assignment tonight at Single-A.
Dan Kolko of MASN Sports reports that if all goes well LaRoche will then move to Double-A for another rehab game Friday. And then, presumably, he’d be ready to come off the disabled list.
LaRoche was off to a great start before the injury, hitting .319 with five homers and a .925 OPS in 32 games following a disappointing 2013 campaign. Washington has used Tyler Moore as the primary first baseman in LaRoche’s absence, but he’s hitting just .217 with a .682 OPS.
The Blue Jays placed right-hander Aaron Sanchez on the 10-day disabled list with a contusion in his right index finger, per a team announcement on Saturday. The assignment is retroactive to Friday. In a corresponding move, righty Marcus Stroman was activated from the DL (right shoulder fatigue) and will take the mound for the Blue Jays at 9:07 PM ET tonight.
Sanchez, 25, is in his fifth season with the club. He hasn’t looked his sharpest so far this year, going 3-5 in 15 starts with a career-worst 4.52 ERA, 5.1 BB/9 and 7.6 SO/9 through 79 2/3 innings. It’s not yet clear how long he’ll be sidelined, though he could miss as little as one turn in the rotation before returning to the roster in the next week or two.
Sanchez isn’t the only struggling starter in Toronto’s rotation, either. Per MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm, the team placed southpaw Jaime Garcia on the DL (right shoulder tenderness) as well, with lefty reliever Tim Mayza scheduled to take his spot on the roster. In 13 starts this season, Garcia carried a 2-6 record, 6.16 ERA, 4.5 BB/9 and 8.2 SO/9 over 61 1/3 innings. Any further decisions pertaining to the rotation — including Tuesday’s starter against the Astros — have yet to be publicly addressed.