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Mark Melancon will join Team USA for WBC semifinal


New Giants closer Mark Melancon has been added to Team USA’s roster for the World Baseball Classic semifinal against Team Japan, MLB.com’s Chris Haft reports. The game will begin at 9 PM ET on Tuesday and will be played at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.

Melancon, who turns 32 years old on March 28, signed a four-year, $62 million contract with the Giants in December. With the Pirates and Nationals last season, Melancon saved 47 games with a 1.67 ERA and a 65/12 K/BB ratio in 71 1/3 innings.

Since the start of the 2013 season, five relievers have compiled an ERA below 2.00 while pitching at least 120 innings of relief. Melancon’s 1.80 ERA is lowest, beating Andrew Miller (1.93), Aroldis Chapman (1.93), Zach Britton (1.95), and Greg Holland (1.97). Needless to say, the Giants — which blew an MLB-worst 30 saves last season — made a major upgrade to the bullpen in signing Melancon. Team USA has done the same by adding him to its roster.

Rafael Montero to have Tommy John surgery

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Mets pitcher Rafael Montero will undergo Tommy John surgery.

Montero felt some discomfort after his latest Grapefruit League appearance. This morning he was diagnosed with a complete tear of the UCL in his right elbow. He’ll now miss all of the 2018 season and most of the first half of the 2019 season.

Montero, 27, was once a top pitching prospect. He performed swingman duties for the Mets last year, starting in 18 games and relieving in 16. He wasn’t too successful in that role — his ERA was 5.52 in 2017 — but he was battling for a spot in the Mets’ bullpen this spring.