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Reports — Nats, Holland reach minor-league deal

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Right-handed reliever Greg Holland and the Washington Nationals have reached an agreement on a minor league contract, according to multiple reports Tuesday.

The 33-year-old Holland was designated for assignment by the Arizona Diamondbacks last week. He was 1-2 with a 4.54 ERA and 17 saves in 22 chances this season.

Holland was 2-0 with a 0.84 ERA in 24 games for the Nationals last season.

Washington’s bullpen has struggled throughout this year. Its 6.05 ERA is the worst in the National League.

MLB Network first reported the Nationals’ agreement with Holland.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Bruce Bochy to manage France for WBC qualifiers

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Former San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy will manage France in its qualifiers next year for the World Baseball Classic.

France has never qualified for the World Baseball Classic, which will be held next in 2021.

Bochy, who retired as the Giants’ manager after the 2019 season, was born in 1955 in Landes de Bussac, France, where his father was stationed in the Army.

“I’ve been thinking a while about what’s next in my life after managing the Giants,” Bochy said in the statement announcing his hiring. “I want to stay involved and give back to baseball. Managing France is a perfect example of how I can help develop the game.”

Bochy, 64, led San Francisco to three World Series championships and 1,052 regular-season victories in 13 seasons.

Overall, he managed 25 seasons in the major leagues for the San Diego Padres and Giants and had a career record of 2,003-2,029.

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Tigers take RHP Rony Garcia from Yankees with top pick in Rule 5 draft

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The Detroit Tigers selected right-hander Rony Garcia with the No. 1 pick in the major league portion of the Rule 5 draft Thursday at baseball’s winter meetings in San Diego.

Eleven players were selected, with only the Baltimore Orioles making multiple selections. The Houston Astros had the most players selected out of their minor league system, with three players picked, and the Chicago Cubs had two players picked from their system.

Garcia, 21, was 4-13 with a 4.01 ERA in 25 appearances in the New York Yankees‘ system last season, finishing the year at Double-A Trenton.

The Orioles selected right-hander Brandon Bailey with the second pick from the Astros. Bailey, 23, finished the season at Double-A Corpus Christi and was 6-8 with a 2.80 ERA in 25 appearances overall. Right-hander Sterling Sharp went third overall to the Miami Marlins, who picked the 24-year-old from the Washington Nationals‘ system. Sharp advanced to Double-A Harrisburg last season and was 5-3 with a 3.16 ERA in 14 appearances at three levels.

Right-hander Stephen Woods was selected No. 4 overall, going to the Kansas City Royals out of the Tampa Bay Rays system. Woods, 24, pitched for the Rays’ Class A team in Charlotte last season, going 9-3 with a 1.88 ERA in 18 appearances.

Right-hander Yohan Ramirez, 24, was selected at No. 5 by Seattle Mariners, from the Astros’ system. Ramirez was 4-7 with a 3.99 ERA in 27 appearances at three levels and finishing at Double-A Corpus Christi.

The first position player selected was outfielder Mark Payton at No. 6 by the Cincinnati Reds, from the Oakland Athletics‘ system. Payton hit .334 with 30 home runs and 97 RBIs in 118 games for Triple-A Las Vegas last season.

The rest of the selections in Round 1 were right-hander Dany Jimenez by the San Francisco Giants, from the Toronto Blue Jays‘ system (7-3, 2.59 ERA in 25 games, finished at Double-A New Hampshire); shortstop Vimael Machin by the Phillies, from the Cubs (.295, 7 HR, 65 RBIs in 129 games, finished at Triple-A Iowa); right-hander Trevor Megill, by the Cubs, from the San Diego Padres (2-2, 3.86 ERA in 39 games, finished at Triple-A El Paso); and shortstop Jonathan Arauz, by the Boston Red Sox, from the Astros (.249, 11 HR, 55 RBIs in 115 games, finished at Double-A Corpus Christi).

The Phillies later traded Machin to the A’s for cash considerations.

Only one player was selected in Round 2, with the Orioles picking right-hander Michael Rucker from the Cubs (0-3, 4.18 ERA in 36 games; finished at Triple-A Iowa).

Only players not on teams’ 40-man rosters were eligible to be selected. Teams selecting a player in the draft pay a fee of $100,000 and the selected players must remain in the majors the entire season or be offered back to their original teams for $50,000.

Last season, of the 14 players selected in the major league phase of the draft, only three players remained in the majors with the clubs who picked them the entire season: shortstop Richie Martin (Orioles), pitcher Elvis Luciano (Blue Jays) and pitcher Brandon Brennan (Mariners).

Many players selected will eventually be returned during the season, but several established major leaguers got their big league starts via the Rule 5 draft. The most recent success story is right-hander Brad Keller, who was selected by the Reds in 2017 and traded to the Kansas City Royals. Since joining Kansas City, Keller has made 48 starts in two seasons and owns a 3.68 ERA.

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Source — Catcher Austin Romine reaches one-year deal with Tigers

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Catcher Austin Romine has agreed to a one-year contract worth just over $4 million with the Detroit Tigers, a source told ESPN’s Buster Olney on Thursday.

Romine is expected to compete with Grayson Greiner in spring training for the team’s starting catching job.

Romine, 31, had a career year at the plate last season for the New York Yankees, hitting .281 with 8 home runs and 35 RBIs in 72 games, serving as the backup to starter Gary Sanchez.

The eight-year major league veteran has played his entire career with the Yankees and has a .239 batting average with 25 home runs and 135 RBIs in 368 games.

He has a career fielding percentage of .994 and has caught 23% of runners attempting to steal (44-of-148).

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