Carlos Rodon to make first MLB start Saturday

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Jeff Samardzija officially dropped the appeal of his five-game suspension on Wednesday, temporarily opening a spot in the White Sox starting rotation.

And top prospect Carlos Rodon is going to fill it.

Dan Hayes of CSNChicago.com reports that the 22-year-old lefty will make his first major league start on Saturday night at U.S. Cellular Field against the visiting Reds. Rodon was called up from Triple-A Charlotte on April 20 and has been working out of the White Sox bullpen for the past two weeks, boasting a 2.84 ERA and four strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings.

Rodon, the third overall pick in the 2014 MLB Amateur Draft out of North Carolina State University, struck out 51 batters in 34 1/3 minor league frames before the White Sox opted to promote him to the bigs.

He should eventually replace John Danks or Hector Noesi in Chicago’s rotation.

Rays acquire RHP Drew Smith from Tigers

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The Rays acquired minor league reliever Drew Smith from the Tigers on Friday, per a team announcement. The move will close the loop on the trade the two teams began in January for backup outfielder Mikie Mahtook.

Smith, 23, pitched his first full season in Single-A West Michigan in 2016, turning in a 2.96 ERA, 4.3 BB/9 and 11.5 SO/9 in 48 2/3 innings. The right-hander is still several levels away from making any impact on the Rays’ major league roster, but appears to be progressing steadily in two seasons of pro ball and has delivered two runs, four walks and 12 strikeouts in his first 11 2/3 innings at High-A Lakeland this season. Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reports that he’ll be reassigned to the Rays’ High-A Charlotte this week.

Yankees activate Didi Gregorius from the disabled list

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The Yankees have activated shortstop Didi Gregorius from the 10-day disabled list, the club announced on Friday. Infielder Pete Kozma was designated for assignment to clear roster space.

Gregorius, 27, suffered a strained right shoulder while playing in the World Baseball Classic last month. He’s in Friday’s starting lineup, batting sixth against the Orioles.

Last season, Gregorius hit .276/.304/.447 with 20 home runs and 70 RBI in 597 plate appearances.