Blue Jays activate Matt Chapman from the injured list

Toronto Blue Jays v Baltimore Orioles
Toronto Blue Jays v Baltimore Orioles / Jess Rapfogel/GettyImages

Prior to tonight's contest against the Texas Rangers, the Toronto Blue Jays took to social media to announce a pair of roster moves. Returning from the injured list is third baseman Matt Chapman, who was on the 10-day IL with a middle finger sprain. A mixture of Davis Schneider, Cavan Biggio, Ernie Clement and Santiago Espinal filled in nicely while he was out of game action.

Chapman, 30, remains one of the best defensive third basemen in the game but has experienced a dramatic drop-off in offensive production since the first month or so of the 2023 season. At third, he's in the 82nd percentile in OAA and 80th in Arm Strength. At the plate, he has 36 doubles, 15 home runs and a 112 OPS+ in 125 games but so much of those numbers are carried by strong months of April and July.

Going down to Triple-A is outfielder Nathan Lukes, who made it into just one game in his latest stint in the big leagues. The 28-year-old grounded into a double play in his lone plate appearance in Wednesday night's 10-0 loss to the Rangers, staying in the game in right field. He will now return to the Buffalo Bisons where he has done nothing but produce at the plate in each of the past two seasons. In 44 games this year, Lukes has 15 doubles, five home runs, 30 RBI and a .366 batting average alongside an OPS of .970.

Getting someone like Chapman going for this stretch of important games is critical for the Blue Jays. The club is looking for offense wherever they can find it, and lately it's been some unheralded heroes from the Buffalo Bisons stepping up. If Chapman can't get it going upon his return from the IL, it wouldn't be the biggest shock in the world to see him begin to lose playing time to someone like Biggio, Schneider or Clement.