NEW YORK -- Edwin Jackson was a solid starting pitcher for the first Nationals team to win a National League East title.Five years later, Jackson returned to the organization Friday, this time on a Minor League contract that will have him joining the rotation at Triple-A Syracuse. If all goes
NEW YORK -- Edwin Jackson was a solid starting pitcher for the first Nationals team to win a National League East title.
Five years later, Jackson returned to the organization Friday, this time on a Minor League contract that will have him joining the rotation at Triple-A Syracuse. If all goes well, the 33-year-old right-hander could provide depth for the Major League team down the line.
"This guy always had good stuff," Nationals manager Dusty Baker said. "He might be a guy that gets it together and keeps it together."
Jackson, who has pitched in 364 games for 12 different teams, was released by the Orioles this week. He made just three Major League appearances for the O's, all in relief, allowing seven runs (four earned) in five innings before he was designated for assignment.
Jackson has spent most of his career as a starter, but he pitched effectively out of the bullpen as recently as 2015, when he had a 3.07 ERA in 47 appearances for the Cubs and Braves. The Nationals have an obvious need for bullpen help, but general manager Mike Rizzo stressed that Jackson was going to Syracuse as a starter.
Rizzo wouldn't speculate about whether Jackson could help the Nationals, but the pitcher certainly has that on his mind.
"He told me he always wanted to play for me," Baker said.
Jackson made 31 starts for the 2012 Nationals, and he also started Game 3 of the NL Division Series against the Cardinals. He was 10-11 with a 4.03 ERA in the regular season that year, good enough to convince the Cubs to sign him to a four-year, $52 million contract after the season.
Baker said left-hander Sammy Solis reported no issues after pitching one inning for Syracuse on Thursday in his first Minor League rehabilitation appearance. He allowed a home run to Rusney Castillo and also walked a batter in his one inning. Solis has been on the disabled list since April 19 with left elbow inflammation.
Danny Knobler is a contributor to MLB.com based in New York.