Donaldson's dinger backs Buehrle's stingy start

Blue Jays slugger hits No. 4 of spring; lefty allows one run over five innings

Donaldson's dinger backs Buehrle's stingy start

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez tossed six strong innings, while Jimmy Paredes, Dariel Alvarez and Chris Parmelee (three) each had multiple hits in the Orioles' 4-2 victory over the Blue Jays on Sunday afternoon at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.

Baltimore opened the scoring in the top of the third inning on back-to-back doubles by Everth Cabrera and Paredes. That was the only damage against Blue Jays veteran lefty Mark Buehrle, who scattered seven hits and didn't walk a batter while striking out four over five innings.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays' hopes rest heavily on rotation vitality

Club features solid starting five, but lack of depth a concern; Estrada could prove critical

Blue Jays' hopes rest heavily on rotation vitality

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- The Blue Jays have aspirations of contending this season, but their chances of competing likely will come down to the health of the starting rotation.

Toronto seems to have more depth in most areas of its roster compared to previous years except for the starting staff. That's one aspect of the organization that has to be a major concern as the start of the regular season rapidly approaches.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays claim Wilkins off waivers from White Sox

First baseman immediately optioned to Triple-A Buffalo

Blue Jays claim Wilkins off waivers from White Sox

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- The Blue Jays claimed first baseman Andy Wilkins off waivers from the White Sox on Sunday afternoon and promptly optioned him to Triple-A Buffalo.

Wilkins appeared in 17 games for Chicago last season and hit .140 (6-for-43) with two extra-base hits and two RBIs. He spent most of the 2014 campaign in Triple-A Charlotte, where he hit .293 with 30 home runs, 38 doubles and 85 RBIs.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Siddall: Martin, youthful arms will set pace for Blue Jays

Siddall: Martin, youthful arms will set pace for Blue Jays

The following is a question and answer interview with Blue Jays broadcaster Joe Siddall as he takes a look ahead to the 2015 season:

On the impact of adding Russell Martin...

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bautista continues strong spring as Estrada returns

Blue Jays slugger collects 2-run double; righty works 3 solid innings vs. Braves

Bautista continues strong spring as Estrada returns

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- After Alex Wood delivered six solid innings of three-run ball, Jace Peterson ripped a go-ahead two-run double in the eighth as the Braves defeated the Blue Jays, 5-3, on Saturday at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.

Atlanta opened the scoring in the top of the second inning after Kelly Johnson led off with a double. Two batters later, Phil Gosselin collected an RBI single with right-hander Marco Estrada on the mound for Toronto.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Estrada ready to contribute in any role for Blue Jays

Estrada ready to contribute in any role for Blue Jays

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Marco Estrada arrived in Spring Training with the goal of winning a job in the starting rotation, and while that no longer appears to be a possibility, he's willing to accept any role the Blue Jays have for him.

Estrada made his return to the mound on Saturday afternoon following a two-week absence with a sprained ankle. The injury essentially eliminated any remaining chance he had at a starting role, and it now appears likely that he will end up in middle or long relief.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Barton, Valencia go deep against Pirates

Blue Jays unable to generate much offense as Wolf struggles on the hill

Barton, Valencia go deep against Pirates

BRADENTON, Fla. -- Charlie Morton put in a claim for his inclusion in Pittsburgh's season-opening rotation with six solid innings, and Gregory Polanco struck his second homer in as many days as the Pirates downed a Toronto split-squad, 8-3, in Grapefruit League play Saturday.

Morton, making his way back from Sept. 26 labrum repair surgery, still could remain in Florida for extended spring training when the Bucs break camp on April 2. But he overcame solo homers by Daric Barton and Danny Valencia to limit Toronto to three runs, allowing six hits and walking two without a strikeout. He finished strong, retiring the last nine men he faced.

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Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. Follow him on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Smoak swinging a hot bat at just the right time

Smoak swinging a hot bat at just the right time

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Justin Smoak got off to a well-documented slow start this spring, but there have been signs of life recently and he appears to be heating up at the right time.

Smoak went hitless in his first 16 at-bats and was batting a paltry .077 on March 18. Since then, it has been a different story as Smoak entered play on Saturday with five hits, three home runs, six RBIs and four walks in his past six games.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Johan hopes to start throwing off mound in mid-April

Johan hopes to start throwing off mound in mid-April

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Blue Jays left-hander Johan Santana continues to take a cautious approach to the 2015 season and isn't expected to begin throwing off a mound until the middle of April.

Santana, who signed a Minor League contract late last month, has been throwing off flat ground while continuing to go through strength exercises on his left shoulder.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hutchison ready for regular season after strong outing

Right-hander allows one run over five innings in rain-shortened win

Hutchison ready for regular season after strong outing

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Drew Hutchison made his final full outing of the spring on Friday afternoon and pronounced himself ready for the regular season.

Toronto's right-hander technically has one more start remaining, but the Blue Jays are expected to limit him to either two or three innings. It will be an abbreviated appearance that is designed to keep him sharp without exerting too much energy.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Marcus Stroman is going back to college

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Marcus Stroman is going back to college

Marcus Stroman is heading back to school. It will probably be a little different than how Adam Sandler did it. 

Continue Reading on Cut4

Blue Jays show power in rain-shortened victory

Bautista, Smoak and Pompey each go deep vs. Tigers

Blue Jays show power in rain-shortened victory

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- The Blue Jays homered three times in a 4-1 rain-shortened victory over the Tigers on Friday afternoon in a game that was marred by the loss of Detroit right-hander Justin Verlander to a right triceps injury.

The game was called due to rain in the bottom of the fifth inning.

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Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. Read Beck's Blog and follow him on Twitter @beckjason. Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Former prospect Drabek claimed by White Sox

Former prospect Drabek claimed by White Sox

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- Former No. 1 Blue Jays prospect Kyle Drabek was claimed off waivers by the White Sox on Friday afternoon.

Drabek was the key return when Toronto dealt No. 1 starter Roy Halladay to the Phillies following the 2009 season. He immediately became the club's top prospect, but his career in a Blue Jays uniform never really panned out.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Final roster decisions expected in coming days

Team left with 37 players in camp after sending down LHP Barnes

Final roster decisions expected in coming days

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- The Blue Jays are nearing final decisions on the 25-man roster and an official announcement likely will happen within the next few days.

Toronto made another round of cuts Friday afternoon when Kyle Drabek was claimed on waivers by the White Sox and left-hander Scott Barnes was outrighted to the Minor Leagues. That left the club with 37 players in camp: 16 pitches, three catchers, 12 infielders and six outfielders.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Delabar optioned by Blue Jays; move shocks reliever

Decision indicates club will use rookies Osuna, Castro in bullpen

Delabar optioned by Blue Jays; move shocks reliever

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- In a surprising move, the Blue Jays optioned right-hander Steve Delabar to Minor League camp on Thursday morning.

Delabar admitted he was shocked by the news and said he was expecting to be with the club on Opening Day. Instead, he'll likely begin the year with Triple-A Buffalo.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Tolleson's three-run blast powers Blue Jays past Phils

Infielder's homer backs strong start from Sanchez

Tolleson's three-run blast powers Blue Jays past Phils

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- A four-run eighth inning powered the Blue Jays to a 4-1 win over the Phillies on Thursday afternoon at Florida Auto Exchange Stadium.

An RBI double by Ryan Goins and a three-run blast by Steve Tolleson in the bottom of the eighth provided Toronto's offense.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Encarnacion, Cecil return to action vs. Phils

First baseman, lefty happy to be back after injury-related absences

Encarnacion, Cecil return to action vs. Phils

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- First baseman Edwin Encarnacion and left-hander Brett Cecil made their return to the Blue Jays' lineup in Thursday afternoon's 4-1 win over the Phillies following prolonged absences because of injuries.

Encarnacion, who was out with a sore back, appeared in a pair of Minor League games earlier this week, but Thursday marked his first appearance in Grapefruit League action since March 8. He walked in his first two plate appearances and later hit into a fielder's choice.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Castro, Osuna likely to make team

With Delabar optioned, young prospects have more opportunity in bullpen

Castro, Osuna likely to make team

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- The Blue Jays appear to be going with a full-on youth movement in an attempt to solidify their bullpen.

Prospects Miguel Castro and Roberto Osuna are one step closer to officially making the team after Thursday's surprise demotion of right-hander Steve Delabar. Castro had been considered a lock for the past couple of weeks, but one thought had Osuna beginning the year in the Minors as a starter.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Saunders unlikely for Opening Day

After left knee surgery, Blue Jays want to make sure outfielder is 100 percent

Saunders unlikely for Opening Day

DUNEDIN, Fla. -- The Blue Jays are not expecting outfielder Michael Saunders to be ready for Opening Day.

There had been an outside chance that Saunders would be ready to play on April 6 in New York following knee surgery last month to remove 60 percent of the meniscus in his left knee.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays play long ball in support of strong Norris

Tolleson, Pillar go deep to back southpaw, who allows one run in six innings

Blue Jays play long ball in support of strong Norris

SARASOTA, Fla. -- A pair of homers paved the way for Toronto on Wednesday, with Steve Tolleson and Kevin Pillar each going deep in the Blue Jays' 5-2 win over the Orioles.

After an early unearned run, Tolleson homered in the third off O's starter Wei-Yin Chen to push the Jays' lead to 2-0. Pillar went deep off Orioles righty Ryan Webb in the sixth, connecting for a two-run shot, and Toronto extended its lead with a sacrifice fly by Ezequiel Carrera in the eighth.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. Brittany Ghiroli is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, Britt's Bird Watch, and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @britt_ghiroli. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Pillar gets back into swing of things with homer in return

Outfielder embraced unlikely status as comedy star due to oblique injury

Pillar gets back into swing of things with homer in return

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Kevin Pillar received a lot of attention over the past two weeks for the sneeze heard around the world, but he's taken all of the jokes in stride.

Pillar became a bit of a late-night sensation when NBC's Jimmy Fallon cracked a joke about how the Blue Jays outfielder strained his oblique while sneezing. The jabs and criticism from others could have been taken in a bad light, but instead Pillar embraced it all.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

One-time Blue Jays All-Star Buck announces retirement

Played for seven teams in 11 seasons, was AL All-Star in 2010

One-time Blue Jays All-Star Buck announces retirement

Veteran catcher John Buck, who was in Spring Training camp with the Braves, announced his retirement Thursday in order to spend more time with his family.

The 34-year-old played for seven teams in 11 Major League seasons from 2004-14. He appeared in 1,090 games and collected 844 hits.

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Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Norris happy with progress of new changeup

Norris happy with progress of new changeup

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Left-hander Daniel Norris has added another changeup to his arsenal of pitches, and the Blue Jays hope it will make him more effective against right-handed hitters.

Norris has always thrown a changeup, but the one he used in the past typically tailed into righties. The one he debuted vs. the Orioles on Wednesday afternoon moves away from right-handers and makes it a little harder for them to hit.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays option relievers Jenkins, Schultz to Minors

Blue Jays option relievers Jenkins, Schultz to Minors

SARASOTA, Fla. -- Projections for the Blue Jays' bullpen received some additional clarity on Wednesday when the club optioned right-handers Chad Jenkins and Bo Schultz to the Minor Leagues.

Both pitchers arrived in camp last month with the goal of cracking the Opening Day roster, but in the end they came up just short. It probably didn't help either reliever that options were remaining on their contracts and they could be sent to the Minors without clearing waivers.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Donaldson displays power stroke vs. Twins

Blue Jays third baseman hits third spring homer; Redmond allows one run

Donaldson displays power stroke vs. Twins

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Torii Hunter connected for his first home run in a Twins uniform since 2007, and Eddie Rosario hit a walk-off single in the ninth inning during Minnesota's 6-5 victory over the Blue Jays on Tuesday at Hammond Stadium.

Hunter, who re-signed with the Twins this offseason, broke a 1-1 tie in the bottom of the seventh inning with a three-run shot to left field off Toronto right-hander Chad Jenkins.

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Andrew Simon is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays weighing options on several roster spots

Decision on second base might not come until end of Spring Training

Blue Jays weighing options on several roster spots

FORT MYERS, Fla. -- The Blue Jays have some significant decisions to make regarding their Opening Day roster, but some of those calls will not come until the last minute.

"There are some things we have a pretty good idea of right now," manager John Gibbons said on Tuesday. "But yeah, for the most part, to be fair to some of the guys still involved and things like that, there will be a lot of things we won't announce until the end."

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Andrew Simon is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @AndrewSimonMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays announce dates for Honda Summer Camps

Blue Jays announce dates for Honda Summer Camps

The Blue Jays announced dates for their Honda Summer Camps and instructional clinics that will run throughout Canada this summer. Camps will take place from June 24 in London, Ontario, through Aug. 19 in Montreal. Clinics begin April 25 and run through July 5.

The camps and clinics, which are run in partnership with Baseball Canada and Little League Baseball Canada, are designed for baseball players ages 8-16. It marks the fifth season in a row that the Blue Jays Baseball Academy will host.

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AJ Cassavell is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @ajcassavell. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Inbox: What will Blue Jays do with Navarro?

Beat reporter Gregor Chisholm answers Toronto fans' questions

Inbox: What will Blue Jays do with Navarro?

What do you think is the most likely catcher scenario going into the season?
-- Ted A., Guelph, Ontario

The catching situation depends almost entirely on what the Blue Jays end up doing with Dioner Navarro. It's no secret he has been on the block since Toronto signed Russell Martin, but nothing has come of it. Unless something changes soon, he has to be considered part of the 25-man roster that will open the season on April 6.

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.