Lucas Giolito to make first pro start on Tuesday

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Lucas Giolito was discussed as a possible No. 1 overall pick before a sprained ligament in his elbow ended his senior season with Harvard-Westlake High School in California, but concerns over his health and bonus demands caused him to drop to the Nationals at 16th in June’s First-Year Player Draft. However, it appears the elbow issue is now behind him.

Giolito’s father, Rick Giolito, wrote on his Twitter account yesterday that the 18-year-old right-hander will make his first pro start Tuesday with the Nationals’ Gulf Coast League affiliate.

The Nationals ended up exceeding MLB’s slot recommendation by giving Giolito a $2.925 million bonus, but the upside is undeniable if he’s healthy. His fastball was clocked at 100 mph prior to the injury.

Brandon McCarthy wins final spot in Dodgers’ rotation

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We learned on Monday that Hyun-Jin Ryu won one of the final two spots in the Dodgers’ starting rotation. Brandon McCarthy has won the other, Bill Plunkett of the Orange County Register reports. Alex Wood was McCarthy’s competitor for the spot.

McCarthy, 33, posted a 4.85 ERA across four appearances spanning 13 innings this spring, yielding seven earned runs on 14 hits and a walk with seven strikeouts. Wood, a southpaw, gave up five earned runs in six innings against the Reds on Tuesday, which might have factored into the decision.

Last season, McCarthy made nine starts and one relief appearance, posting a 4.95 ERA with a 44/26 K/BB ratio in 40 innings. In the event McCarthy falters, the club has Wood as well as Julio Urias and the injured Scott Kazmir as potential replacements.

Yankees re-sign Jon Niese to a minor league deal

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The Yankees have re-signed pitcher Jon Niese to a minor league contract, George A. King III of the New York Post reports. Niese was released on Sunday, but he’ll stick around and provide rotation depth for the Yankees.

Niese had knee surgery last August and got a late start to spring training as a result. In six spring appearances lasting an inning each, the lefty gave up three earned runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts.

Niese, a veteran of nine seasons, put up an aggregate 5.50 ERA with an 88/47 K/BB ratio in 121 innings last season between the Pirates and Mets.