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Gibbons hopes top prospect Jimenez is healthy enough to join Jays roster

The logo of the Toronto Blue Jays is seen in this file photo.


Toronto Blue Jays manager John Gibbons says the team will bring up a minor-league catcher at some point after rosters expand on Sunday.

But who that catcher might be is still unclear.

A.J. Jimenez is currently the club's top catching prospect, but the triple-A Buffalo Bisons placed the 23-year-old on the temporary inactive list with nerve irritation in his throwing elbow on Thursday, possibly throwing a wrench in the Blue Jays' plans.

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With Jimenez having undergone Tommy John surgery on the same elbow last season, the Toronto manager said the current injury is something that "gets your attention."

"We'll see. We don't know how bad it is," Gibbons said before Saturday's game against Kansas City at Rogers Centre. "His nerve flared up on him. He's had some history so we just have to see how bad that is ... hopefully it's just a day or two and he can come up here."

Jimenez appeared in eight games with the Bisons this season, hitting .233 with a double and a walk, after being promoted from double-A New Hampshire two weeks ago. In 50 games with the New Hampshire Fisher Cats, Jimenez hit .283 with a .324 on-base percentage.

Gibbons said Mike Nickeas will most likely be the fall-back guy if Jimenez can't make the trip.

Nickeas, a Vancouver native, has played 57 games with the Bisons this season, hitting .164 with a .255 OBP. Over 73 career big-league games with the New York Mets, Nickeas has 31 hits, 19 RBIs and two home runs.

Gibbons also said that relievers Dustin McGowan and Steve Delabar, who were placed on the disabled list in early August, were expected to join the team when rosters expand.

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