Toronto's Esmil Rogers will make his first start since 2011 on Wednesday against a fellow right-hander who knows a thing or two about making the move from the bullpen into the rotation.
Atlanta's Kris Medlen, Rogers' counterpart in the third game of this week's four Interleague games at Rogers Centre and Turner Field, split time between the bullpen and starting rotation from 2009 until the end of July, when he was slotted into the Braves' rotation. What resulted was a serious splash.
From July 31 until the end of the regular season, Medlen went a perfect 12-0 with a 0.97 ERA. But he, like Rogers, is still searching for his second win of the year heading into Wednesday's showdown at 7:10 p.m. ET.
After the two teams split the brief two-game series in Toronto, they head to Atlanta for two more games to finish their Interleague matchup. The Braves and Blue Jays have split their 32 all-time meetings.
Rogers made 67 relief appearances last year, splitting time between the Rockies and Indians before he was traded this winter to the Jays, who have used him 22 times out of the 'pen. His last start came on Sept. 18, 2011, for Colorado.
Toronto has slowly been stretching out Rogers' innings, and the Jays have liked what they've seen from the right-hander, who is 1-2 with a 4.56 ERA. He hasn't allowed a run in his last 7 1/3 innings.
"I wasn't looking for the opportunity, but they gave it to me. I'll take it, and I'll try to do my best," Rogers said.
"They surprised me a little bit, but I know after getting the opportunity the last couple of games to throw three innings, I think they saw I can start, and they gave me the opportunity to start now."
Medlen struggled with his velocity in his last outing, but he battled through windy conditions in New York to last six innings. He's given up three runs or fewer in all four of his home starts this year.
Braves: Johnson leading the way
• On a team full of big names, utility man Chris Johnson leads the team with a .346 batting average. He also leads the team with 15 multihit games this year, including six with three or more hits.
"I feel good. I feel calm," Johnson said. "Just trying to get a good pitch and not do too much with it, and it seems to be working."
Johnson has hit safely in each of his last eight starts, and over his last 10 games, he has hit .482 (14-for-29).
• Justin Upton had the day off Tuesday, and it was just a scheduled break before a stretch of 20 games between off-days, according to manager Fredi Gonzalez. Upton is expected to return Wednesday after just his third day off this year.
Blue Jays: Bautista on fire
• Slugger Jose Bautista has been on fire this month, batting .382 (34-for-89), and he has reached safely in 30 of his last 32 games. He was hitting just .195 through May 1, and has since raised his average to .299.
• Third baseman Brett Lawrie missed Tuesday's game because of a sprained left ankle and is considered day to day, though the team doesn't intend to wait much longer before deciding whether he needs a trip to the disabled list.
"We can't drag this out too long with him," manager John Gibbons said Tuesday morning. "We'll have a better idea by the end of the day or definitely by [Wednesday]."
• Twelve of Edwin Encarnacion's 14 home runs this year have come since April 23.
• Monday night marked the first meeting between brothers Colby and Cory Rasmus. Cory was recalled by the Braves last week, and he made his Major League debut on Wednesday against the Twins. Colby faced Cory in the seventh inning and hit a double to left field. It was the first matchup of brothers in the Majors since Jeff and Jered Weaver faced each other in June 2010.
"It was a strange feeling," Colby said. "A lot of emotions going on. It was awesome and terrible at the same time."
• The Blue Jays and Braves have each won five of their last 11 series. The four games this week are technically considered two two-game series due to the change of venue mid-week.