In what has become an all-too-frequent occurrence for Aaron Sanchez, the Toronto right-hander left his start Monday with a finger injury. It’s a “right middle finger nail avulsion,” to be exact, per Hazel Mae of Sportsnet.
Sanchez threw three innings and 64 pitches against the Rays on Monday, yielding one earned run on six hits and two walks prior to his exit. Monday’s start was Sanchez’s second since May 17, when he departed an outing against the White Sox with a blister.
Finger problems consistently haunted Sanchez from 2017-18, during which he only totaled 141 innings, and have continued to weigh him down this year. Thanks in part to those troubles, Sanchez hasn’t been able to replicate the outstanding 192-inning season he enjoyed in 2016. Sanchez registered a 3.00 ERA/3.55 FIP with 7.55 K/9, 2.95 BB/9 and a 54.4 percent groundball rate that year, which stands as the Blue Jays’ most recent playoff campaign.
Toronto was a contender earlier in Sanchez’s career, but it’s now in a rebuild. As such, Sanchez could be a summer trade candidate if teams are remotely confident in his health. With a 3.75 ERA/4.54 FIP, 8.4 K/9 and a 51.7 percent grounder mark in 60 innings, Sanchez hasn’t pitched poorly this season. The soon-to-be 27-year-old’s walk rate (4.95 per nine) is far too high, but that alone may not scare off other clubs. At $3.9MM, Sanchez is affordable, and he’s under control through next year.