Thornton is likely to begin the season as the Blue Jays' No. 4 starter with Chase Anderson (oblique) sidelined, Arden Zwelling of Sportsnet.ca reports.

The 26-year-old was already the frontrunner for the fifth spot in the rotation, but he receives some additional security with Anderson starting the season on the injured list. Thornton made his big-league debut in 2019 and had a 4.84 ERA, 1.41 WHIP and 149:61 K:BB over 154.1 innings. Ryan Borucki, Anthony Kay and Nate Pearson remain in competition for the No. 5 spot.

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