The Royals agreed to a one-year major-league contract with former Los Angeles Dodgers farmhand Scott Barlow on Thursday, giving him the 39th spot on the team’s 40-man roster.
Barlow, a right-handed pitcher who underwent Tommy John surgery early in his career, assembled a 3.29 ERA as a starter last season despite struggling through seven mid-season starts (26 earned runs in 32 1/3 innings) at Class AAA Oklahoma City. He spent the bulk of the year dominating the Texas League with Class AA Tulsa, where he went 6-3 with a 2.10 ERA in 107 1/3 innings.
The Dodgers selected Barlow in the sixth round of the 2011 draft out of Golden Valley High School in California. His fastball peaked in the high 80s at the time, but it began to creep into the 90s within his first few months in the organization, according to MLive.com.
He developed elbow soreness along the way and underwent Tommy John surgery in early 2012. Although he returned to baseball in 2013, his workload did not surpass 106 innings until 2016, when he logged 124 1/3 across 23 starts and one relief appearance in Tulsa.
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One week away from the Rule 5 draft, which takes place on the last day of next week’s winter meetings, the Royals have one spot open on their 40-man roster.
Barlow, a 6-3, 225-pounder who turns 25 this month, signed a split contract with the Royals worth $650,000 on the major-league level and $225,000 in the minors.