Tulo homers at leadoff spot in Toronto debut

Shortstop had five career plate appearances batting No. 1; Gibbons keeping best hitters up top

Tulo homers at leadoff spot in Toronto debut

TORONTO -- John Gibbons hasn't been one to shy away from non-traditional lineups throughout his managerial career, and never was that more evident than when he inserted Troy Tulowitzki into the leadoff spot for his Blue Jays debut on Wednesday night against the Phillies.

It didn't take long for Tulowitzki to make his presence felt.

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

Blue Jays follow Tulo's lead in rout of Phillies

Blue Jays follow Tulo's lead in rout of Phillies

TORONTO -- Troy Tulowitzki made the most of his Blue Jays debut Wednesday, cracking a homer while collecting a pair of doubles in an 8-2 win over the Phillies at Rogers Centre. The Blue Jays' newest star collected three hits with three RBIs and three runs scored as Toronto split the two-game set.

Making his first career start in a leadoff role, Tulowitzki, acquired in a trade with the Rockies on Tuesday, made his presence felt in the third, when he went deep with a two-run shot off Philly starter Jerome Williams to spot the Blue Jays an early 2-0 lead. He was at it again in the fifth, when he laced a leadoff double to left field before Jose Bautista cashed him in with a one-out single. Tulowitzki hit an RBI double off the wall in his next at-bat as part of a three-run sixth, and he finished 3-for-5.

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Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Travis out indefinitely with shoulder injury

MRI reveals no damage, but Blue Jays rookie may still return to DL; Bautista OK after cramp

Travis out indefinitely with shoulder injury

TORONTO -- Devon Travis could be looking at a disabled list stint after he exited the Blue Jays' 3-2 loss to the Phillies on Tuesday with left shoulder irritation.

The injury kept the rookie second baseman out of the lineup for Wednesday's finale at Rogers Centre as the club wrapped a two-game set. While he's considered day to day for now, Travis isn't overly optimistic about a swift return.

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Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

After initial shock, Tulo excited to join Blue Jays

Shortstop buying into win-now mentality along with club's long-term vision

After initial shock, Tulo excited to join Blue Jays

TORONTO -- Troy Tulowitzki had been frequently mentioned in trade talks over the last couple of years, but his constant presence in the rumor mill did little to alleviate the shock he felt when Colorado officially agreed to a blockbuster trade with the Blue Jays.

Tulowitzki admitted he was "blindsided" by Tuesday's deal that saw him head to Toronto alongside reliever LaTroy Hawkins in a stunning trade for Jose Reyes and a package of top pitching prospects. The business side of baseball can often serve as a wakeup call for a lot of players, and that harsh reality was pretty evident this week.

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

Blue Jays designate Doubront; rotation spot in flux

As club weighs potential trades, replacement may come from outside organization

Blue Jays designate Doubront; rotation spot in flux

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays will go the next few days without a fifth starter, having decided to designate left-hander Felix Doubront for assignment in order to make room on the roster for shortstop Troy Tulowitzki.

Doubront made his final start for Toronto on Tuesday night, when he allowed three runs over four-plus innings. It was his third consecutive outing of five innings or fewer.

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

Estrada, Blue Jays welcome in Royals

Estrada, Blue Jays welcome in Royals

Left-hander Danny Duffy (4-4, 4.03 ERA) takes the mound for the Royals as they open a four-game series at Toronto and against right-hander Marco Estrada (7-6, 3.55 ERA).

The Royals took two of three from the Blue Jays earlier this month in Kansas City.

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Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FlannyMLB and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bautista clears air regarding Tulo comments

Blue Jays star takes exception to headlines that misinterpreted his remarks

Bautista clears air regarding Tulo comments

TORONTO -- Jose Bautista wants to set the record straight.

The Blue Jays' star outfielder said on Wednesday that he felt his comments regarding the Troy Tulowitzki trade a day earlier were unfairly characterized by local broadcast networks, which suggested that he was less than enthusiastic about the club acquiring the All-Star shortstop in a trade for Jose Reyes.

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Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hawkins fits in with Toronto as middle reliever

'Excited' to pitch for team in contention, veteran tosses 1-2-3 sixth in Blue Jays debut

Hawkins fits in with Toronto as middle reliever

TORONTO -- The presence of LaTroy Hawkins doesn't change the Blue Jays' plans for closing out games, but it does give manager John Gibbons another reliable reliever to use in high-leverage situations.

Hawkins immediately made his presence felt, coming in during the sixth inning Tuesday -- with the Blue Jays trailing the Phillies by one run -- and getting a pair of groundouts before a strikeout of Ryan Howard. Toronto went on to fall, 3-2.

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

Promising start fizzles as Blue Jays fall to Phils

Promising start fizzles as Blue Jays fall to Phils

TORONTO -- Ken Giles settled into his newly minted role as closer on Tuesday, helping the Phillies seal a 3-2 win over the Blue Jays at Rogers Centre.

Hours after former closer Jonathan Papelbon was traded to the Nationals, Giles came on to protect a one-run lead and threw a scoreless ninth inning as Philadelphia took the opener of a two-game set. After allowing a leadoff single to Edwin Encarnacion, Giles retired Chris Colabello and Russell Martin on flyouts before Danny Valencia grounded into a forceout to end the game. It was Giles' first save of the season and the second of his career.

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Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Todd Zolecki is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bautista dismisses injury as minor leg cramp

Blue Jays starter exits after grounding out in eighth, says he'll be ready to play in the finale

Bautista dismisses injury as minor leg cramp

TORONTO -- A leg cramp -- nothing more -- forced Jose Bautista from the game in the eighth inning of the Blue Jays' 3-2 loss to the Phillies on Tuesday.

Bautista hit an inning-ending grounder to shortstop and almost immediately pulled up as he headed down the first-base line. The 34-year old grabbed his right hamstring before turning and limping off the field.

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Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays eye present, future with Tulo trade

Toronto parts with Reyes, three pitching prospects in deal for shortstop, reliever Hawkins

Blue Jays eye present, future with Tulo trade

TORONTO -- Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos doubled down early Tuesday morning by pulling off a blockbuster trade with the Rockies for All-Star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, but make no mistake, the move was as much about the future as it was a run at the postseason.

Tulowitzki is under club control through the 2021 season, and he is now part of a long-term core that includes third baseman Josh Donaldson and catcher Russell Martin. None of those three players can be eligible for free agency until at least after the 2018 season, and all could be around long after the contracts of Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion eventually expire.

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

Will Blue Jays deal for pitching before Deadline?

Will Blue Jays deal for pitching before Deadline?

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays made a potent lineup even better by acquiring shortstop Troy Tulowitzki in a blockbuster trade with the Rockies on Tuesday morning, but the pitching staff remains an area of weakness that will have to be addressed prior to Friday's non-waiver Trade Deadline.

Toronto general manager Alex Anthopoulos has openly talked about his desire to upgrade the rotation, but time is starting to run out. Anthopoulos has three days left to acquire at least one pitcher prior to Friday's 4 p.m. ET Deadline, but he does have the luxury of shopping in a market that's still flush with arms.

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

Donaldson, Dickey can relate to Tulo's shift

Blue Jays duo familiar with culture shock, pressure of joining new organization

Donaldson, Dickey can relate to Tulo's shift

TORONTO -- Josh Donaldson knows how Troy Tulowitzki must be feeling. When the Blue Jays acquired Donaldson in an offseason blockbuster deal with the A's, the move caught everyone off guard, but perhaps no one more than Donaldson himself. After earning fan-favourite status over three seasons in Oakland, Donaldson was shocked when he was shipped north of the border. 

So in some ways, Donaldson can relate to Tulowitzki's surprise when the Rockies dealt their star shortstop to the Blue Jays on Tuesday, and the challenges that come with joining a new team in a new city and different country.

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Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

What ramifications will Tulowitzki trade have for Blue Jays?

What ramifications will Tulowitzki trade have for Blue Jays?

Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos pulled off another shocking trade early Tuesday morning, a deal that brought five-time All-Star Troy Tulowitzki to Toronto in exchange for Jose Reyes and a package of top prospects.

The magnitude of this deal is nothing short of stunning and will cause ripple effects through the Blue Jays' organization -- not only for this season, but also for years to come. Its impact will be felt in many ways, and the trade creates a lot of questions about where Toronto will go from here.

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

Tulo turns attention to Toronto and the future

Tulo turns attention to Toronto and the future

CHICAGO -- Troy Tulowitzki admitted feeling "somewhat blindsided" when the Rockies traded him on Monday night, but he is turning his attention to a Blue Jays team that did its homework and considers him part of what it hopes is a playoff run.

"It's mixed emotions -- sad, excited, kind of like getting drafted all over again," said Tulowitzki, who as a rookie in 2007 contributed to a Rockies team that went to the World Series and later developed into one of the game's best shortstops. "It's like the big league debut. I didn't sleep at all last night, and I didn't sleep before my big league debut. It's tough, but all I can do is look forward and keep doing what I do, and things will work out."

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Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb, and like his Facebook page. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hawkins excited for next chapter with Blue Jays

Veteran reliever headed to 11th team as he plays in his final season

Hawkins excited for next chapter with Blue Jays

CHICAGO -- Right-handed reliever LaTroy Hawkins had boarded the Rockies' team bus after Monday night's 9-8 loss to the Cubs at Wrigley Field when Rockies general manager Jeff Bridich rang to inform him the team had agreed to trade him and star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki to the Blue Jays for shortstop Jose Reyes and three pitching prospects.

The deal was formally announced Tuesday morning.

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Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb, and like his Facebook page. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Tracy Ringolsby

Tulo deal could help Blue Jays to next level

Tulo deal could help Blue Jays to next level

The focus for the Toronto Blue Jays as Friday's non-waiver Trade Deadline nears is on strengthening their pitching staff.

Enter shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, acquired by the Blue Jays along with setup reliever LaTroy Hawkins, on Monday night in exchange for shortstop Jose Reyes and three Minor League players, right-handed pitchers Jeff Hoffman, Miguel Castro and Jesus Tinoco

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Tracy Ringolsby is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

A Canadian primer for Tulo now that he's a Blue Jay

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A Canadian primer for Tulo now that he's a Blue Jay

By now, you've no doubt heard that the Blue Jays reportedly managed to land star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki from the Rockies in a blockbuster deal early Tuesday morning. Neither club has yet confirmed it, but it's a trade that's sure to send shockwaves throughout the league. We'll leave the actual baseball ramifications to smarter folks, and instead take this opportunity to perform a far greater service: Giving Tulo a bit of a Canadian primer. 

You see, Tulowitzki's only visited our neighbor to the north once, during Interleague Play in 2007, so he'll be adjusting to a lot of new things on the fly as the pennant race kicks into high gear. And so, to help ease his transition, we've compiled a list of some important things to do in/know about Toronto.

Continue Reading on Cut4

Blue Jays split road trip, but it ends with disappointment

Blue Jays split road trip, but it ends with disappointment

SEATTLE -- The Blue Jays' West Coast trip, which began with such promise, ended in disappointment with a 6-5 loss to the Mariners on Sunday afternoon as the cons off-set any of the pros from the last six days.

Toronto, which has struggled on the road all season, went 3-3 with stops in Oakland and Seattle. On the surface, that doesn't sound too bad, but things appear a lot worse when the losses are examined a little more closely.

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

Carrera's big day not enough as Blue Jays drop finale

Carrera's big day not enough as Blue Jays drop finale

SEATTLE -- Franklin Gutierrez hit a walk-off home run as the Mariners beat the Blue Jays, 6-5, in 10 innings in Sunday's series finale at Safeco Field.

"Guti's a veteran, and he's been big for us. He's really playing extremely good baseball," said Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon afterward. "It's kind of hard to keep him out of that lineup."

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Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Andrew Erickson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bullpen remains a major concern for Blue Jays

Schultz gives up tying homer vs. Seattle, before Loup takes the loss

Bullpen remains a major concern for Blue Jays

SEATTLE -- Toronto's bullpen has been an ongoing concern all season, and even after receiving a facelift on Saturday afternoon, it wasn't enough to change the club's fortunes during a weekend series vs. the Mariners.

The Blue Jays once again couldn't protect a lead late in the game as Bo Schultz surrendered a game tying two-run homer in the seventh, and lefty Aaron Loup surrendered a walk-off solo shot to Franklin Gutierrez in the 10th. That resulted in a 6-5 loss and forced Toronto to settle for a 3-3 road trip.

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

Goins hits into wacky triple play vs. Mariners

Carrera falls off third base to become the final out

Goins hits into wacky triple play vs. Mariners

SEATTLE -- In a truly wacky series of events, the Mariners turned their 11th triple play in franchise history in the fourth inning of their 6-5 win over Toronto, their first since Aug. 9, 2010. It was the first time the Blue Jays had hit into a triple play since June 6, 2014 against the Cardinals.

Leading, 4-3, the Blue Jays put runners on first and third with nobody out, when second baseman Ryan Goins grounded a 1-2 curveball to first baseman Mark Trumbo.

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Andrew Erickson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Umpire Joyce exits after being struck by foul ball

Umpire Joyce exits after being struck by foul ball

SEATTLE -- Third-base umpire Jim Joyce exited with a leg injury in the 10th inning of the Mariners' 6-5 win over the Blue Jays on Sunday at Safeco Field.

Mariners second baseman Robinson Cano fouled a fastball from Blue Jays pitcher Aaron Loup down the third-base line with no outs in the 10th. The ball made contact with Joyce, who hesitated momentarily before calling the ball foul.

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Andrew Erickson is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gibbons defies book, pushes right buttons

Blue Jays manager calls on Carrera in pinch, sticks with Colabello for winning rally

Gibbons defies book, pushes right buttons

SEATTLE -- A pair of unorthodox late-inning decisions by Blue Jays manager John Gibbons proved to be the difference in an 8-6 victory over the Mariners on Saturday afternoon at Safeco Field.

The interesting thought process began in the eighth, when Gibbons decided to use Ezequiel Carrera as a pinch-hitter instead of Justin Smoak, which led to a game-tying two-run shot, Carrera's second homer of the season. In the ninth, Gibbons then opted to stick with Chris Colabello with the bases loaded, and the veteran hitter came through with the go-ahead two-run single.

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

Late rally gives Blue Jays final say in Seattle

Late rally gives Blue Jays final say in Seattle

SEATTLE -- Chris Colabello hit a go-ahead two-run single in the ninth inning as the Blue Jays came from behind to beat the Mariners, 8-6, in the second game of a three-game series Saturday afternoon at Safeco Field.

"Listen, I think our offense is starting to click," said Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon. "I think we're playing extremely good baseball. Today was a hiccup. It was a tough loss, no question about it."

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

Activated from DL, Sanchez to bolster bullpen

Blue Jays righty understands transition from starter to reliever; Delabar optioned

Activated from DL, Sanchez to bolster bullpen

SEATTLE -- The Blue Jays finally added a big piece to their bullpen on Saturday afternoon as right-hander Aaron Sanchez made his long-awaited return following a six-week absence.

Sanchez was activated from the disabled list prior to Saturday's game against the Mariners while right-hander Steve Delabar became the odd-man out and was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo. Sanchez entered Saturday's game in the eighth inning and pitched around a single to record a groundout and two lineouts, one of which was snared by Josh Donaldson to end the inning in the Blue Jays' 8-6 win.

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

Estrada shoulders blame after rough start

Moved up a day with Hutchison scratched, Blue Jays righty doesn't use it as an excuse

Estrada shoulders blame after rough start

SEATTLE -- Even when Blue Jays righty Marco Estrada doesn't have his best stuff, he usually can find a way to at least partially survive with above-average command, but that wasn't the case Friday night at Safeco Field.

Estrada missed his spot more often than not and there were far too many pitches left up in the zone en route to a 5-2 loss to the Marienrs. The pitching line was decent enough until the fifth inning, but there was hard contact throughout and that ultimately resulted in a short night.

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

Blue Jays fall to Felix, M's in opener

Blue Jays fall to Felix, M's in opener

SEATTLE -- Felix Hernandez forged a tie for the American League lead in wins with No. 12 as the Mariners beat the Blue Jays, 5-2, in Friday night's series opener at Safeco Field.

Mariners designated hitter Mark Trumbo hit a go-ahead two-run homer in the fourth and second baseman Robinson Cano followed with a two-run triple in the fifth to secure Seattle's first set of back-to-back wins since June 30 and July 1.

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