BLUE JAYS Sanchez on DL
CLEVELAND — Toronto Blue Jays right-hander Aaron Sanchez has been placed on the disabled list for the fourth time this season because of a blister problem.
Sanchez was removed from his start against Boston on Wednesday because of a recurrence of a blister on the middle finger of his right hand. He was examined by a hand specialist Friday in Cleveland and there’s no timetable for his return.
The issue has limited Sanchez to eight starts. He’s 1-3 with a 4.25 ERA. Sanchez was 15-2 with an AL-best 3.00 ERA last season and made the All-Star team.
Right-hander Joe Smith (sore shoulder) was activated from the disabled list and right-hander Chris Smith was recalled from Class AAA Buffalo. Left-hander Jeff Beliveau, who allowed six runs and didn’t retire a batter in the seventh inning Friday, was designated for assignment.
GIANTS Sandoval returns
SAN FRANCISCO — Pablo Sandoval is back with the San Francisco Giants after signing a minor league contract Saturday with the team he broke into the major leagues.
The 2012 World Series MVP walked into the Giants clubhouse at AT&T Park as if he’d never left, shaking hands with players and grabbing bullpen catcher and former teammate Eli Whiteside in a bear hug from behind.
Sandoval, 31, was expected to be the designated hitter for Class A San Jose later Saturday night and will join Class AAA Sacramento on Tuesday where he will split time between third base and DH.
The Boston Red Sox released Sandoval on Wednesday when the third baseman didn’t report after being designated for assignment last week. It officially ended the Boston tenure for the slugger, who never was healthy enough to live up to the expectations that came with the big free agent contract he signed in 2014.
BREWERS Braun back in lineup
PHILADELPHIA — Ryan Braun was back in the Milwaukee Brewers’ lineup on Saturday night against the Philadelphia Phillies after missing the past three games with a right wrist injury.
The Brewers had seen their lead over the Chicago Cubs in the NL Central trimmed to one game heading into Saturday’s games.
Braun batted third and played left field against the Phillies.
ORIOLES Duquette: Holding tight
BALTIMORE — The Baltimore Orioles apparently have no intention of dealing away veteran talent before the non-waiver trade deadline.
At least for now. Although the Orioles were 46-50 and in fourth place in the AL East before Saturday’s game against Houston, vice president of baseball operations Dan Duquette said he believes the team has the potential to make a playoff run.
“The Orioles have had better ballclubs at this stage of the season, but I still have hope for this year’s club,” Duquette said. “I’ve got a lot of confidence that the guys that we have can put it together.”
The rumor mill has Baltimore shopping veteran relievers Zach Britton, Brad Brach and Darren O’Day, along with outfielder Seth Smith and catcher Welington Castillo.