Nationals call up Yunesky Maya six weeks after signing Cuban pitcher for $6 million

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Washington signed Cuban defector Yunesky Maya to a four-year, $6 million contract on July 31 and today the Nationals called up the 28-year-old right-hander.
Maya will make his big-league debut tonight against the Mets after moving quickly through the Nationals’ system with a 3.38 ERA and 18/10 K/BB ratio in 21.1 innings split between three different levels.
After successfully fleeing Cuba in September of last year Maya lived in the Dominican Republic for nine months before he was authorized to sign with an MLB team.
Maya went 13-4 with a 2.22 ERA in Cuba last season, ranking second to only Aroldis Chapman for the league lead in strikeouts, and was 48-29 with a 2.51 ERA for his entire career there.

Hyun-Jin Ryu will open season in Dodgers’ rotation

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Dodgers manager Dave Roberts announced on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu will open the regular season in the starting rotation, MLB.com’s Ken Gurnick reports.

Ryu, 30, missed the entire 2015 season and made only one start last season due to shoulder and elbow injuries. The lefty has looked solid in three spring appearances, however, yielding a lone run on five hits and a walk with eight strikeouts in nine innings.

With Scott Kazmir likely to begin the season on the disabled list, that leaves Alex Wood and Brandon McCarthy to battle it out for the fifth spot in the Dodgers’ rotation.

Jorge Soler diagnosed with strained oblique, Opening Day in doubt

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Royals outfielder Jorge Soler has been diagnosed with a strained oblique, making it likely that he begins the regular season on the disabled list, Rustin Dodd of The Kansas City Star reports.

The Royals acquired Soler from the Cubs in December in exchange for reliever Wade Davis. Over parts of three seasons with the Cubs, Soler hit .258/.328/.434 with 27 home runs and 98 RBI in 765 plate appearances.

When he’s healthy, Soler is expected to find himself in the Royals’ lineup as a right fielder and occasionally as a designated hitter.