Bill Bray, battling back from injuries, wants to pitch in 2014

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Reliever Bill Bray had a tough 2013. He was able to accrue just 4 1/3 innings of work with Washington’s Double-A affiliate in Harrisburg due to back, groin, and shoulder injuries. He racked up just 8 2/3 innings in 2012 with the Reds as well.

Bray, however, is hoping a team will offer him a chance to pitch in 2014 according to Mike Berardino of the St. Paul Pioneer Press. The 30-year-old has shown he can be effective when he can stay healthy, finishing 2011 with a 2.98 ERA. But staying healthy has been an issue for him throughout his career, having missed significant amounts of time in the past due to shoulder soreness, undergoing Tommy John surgery, groin strains, and those lingering back issues.

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.