White Sox aren’t calling up top pick Carlos Rodon

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MLB.com’s Scott Merkin wrote last month that there was a “better-than-average” chance of left-hander Carlos Rodon — who was selected third overall in this year’s draft — joining the White Sox as a September callup. But it’s not going to happen.

“It just wasn’t right time in his development to bring him to the big leagues and and ask him to get big league hitters out,” White Sox general manager Rick Hahn told beat writer Daryl Van Schouwen of the Chicago Sun-Times on Tuesday evening. “He has responded to all the challenges. We fully expect him to come to big league camp and compete for a spot on the 2015 White Sox.”

Rodon was a star in college at North Carolina State and has skyrocketed through Chicago’s farm system, posting a 2.92 ERA and 38 strikeouts in 24 2/3 innings between the rookie-level Arizona League and Triple-A Charlotte. He got an above-slot $6.6 million signing bonus from the White Sox in July.

The Nationals expect Bryce Harper to test free agency

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Earlier this week at the Winter Meetings, Scott Boras said that he and the Washington Nationals had had preliminary discussions about a contract extension for Bryce Harper. Harper, of course, can become a free agent following the 2018 season and is widely expected to command the largest contract in baseball history.

While that may have given some Nationals fans hope that no other team would get the chance to bid on him, the Nationals are of the view that they have no shot to sign Harper before he at least tests the free agent market. From USA Today’s Bob Nightengale:

A lot of this seems like mutual posturing, doesn’t it? Boras trying to make it appear as though the he and Harper are giving the Nats a fair hearing and the Nats trying to make it appear as though, no matter what they do, Harper is going to hit the market. I tend to believe, personally, that Boras and Harper are hellbent on testing the market, but it’s possible that there is some number that the Nats can offer to head that off, right? Maybe?

Either way: big year ahead for Harper.