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Thole, LaRoche called up by Jays

By Mike Harrington

The Bisons will be pretty thin for tonight's makeup doubleheader against Lehigh Valley (5:30 at Coca-Cola Field) because the Toronto Blue Jays have called up catcher Josh Thole and third baseman Andy LaRoche. They are certainly well-deserved promotions.

The Blue Jays have designated catcher Henry Blanco for assignment. The Thole/Blanco switch was long overdue. R.A. Dickey has said Blanco is the best knuckleball catcher he's ever had, although Thole caught most of Dickey's Cy Young season in 2012 in New York. Thole hit just .171 in spring training for the Jays so they opted to keep Blanco. 

Bad move. Blanco is basically useless offensively and batting  just .184. Thole, meanwhile, was batting .322 with seven homers and 31 RBIs through 41 games. He can be used as a pinch-hitter and can certainly give the Jays some pop behind the plate to spell J.P. Arencibia.

LaRoche hit .282 with seven homers and 32 RBIs in 49 games with the Bisons and is in the big leagues for the first time since 2011 with Brett Lawrie on the disabled list.

The Bisons, remember, are getting Anthony Gose back from Toronto and may be keeping Chad Jenkins in their rotation because the Blue Jays today signed veteran Ching-Ming Wang off the Scranton roster and penciled him in to start Tuesday night; Wang was scheduled to start Tuesday against the Bisons.


Bisons/Blue Jays
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About Inside Pitch

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington

Mike Harrington, a Canisius College graduate who began his career as a News reporter in 1987, has covered the Buffalo Bisons since 1992 and Major League Baseball since 1995. A member of the Baseball Writers' Association of America, Harrington has reported on more than 30 MLB postseason series — including every game of the World Series in this century — and all three of the Bisons' championship runs in their modern era. He is a connoisseur of the famous Stadium Mustard at Cleveland's Progressive Field.

@BNHarrington |

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz

Amy Moritz, a native of Lockport, has covered the Bisons for The Buffalo News since 2002. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism/mass communication from St. Bonaventure University and a master’s degree in humanities from the University at Buffalo. An endurance athlete, she has completed several triathlons, half marathons and marathons.

@amymoritz |