Andrew Cashner could rejoin the Padres’ rotation this weekend

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Padres right-hander Andrew Cashner hasn’t pitched since May 13 due to soreness and irritation in his throwing elbow, but he could come off the disabled list as soon as this weekend against the Nationals.

Will Laws of MLB.com reports that Cashner threw 65 pitches in a simulated game today at PETCO Park in San Diego. He reported no soreness in his elbow and said he’s ready to throw “six to eight innings,” but Padres manager Bud Black said they’ll wait to see how he feels tomorrow before making an official decision on his status.

Cashner was great after joining the Padres’ rotation last year and he picked up from where he left off prior to the injury, posting a 2.35 ERA and 47/17 K/BB ratio in 57 1/3 innings over nine starts.

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.