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Washington Nationals welcome back Sterling Sharp

Pitcher Rule 5 product returned by Marlins to the team that drafted him ... 

MLB: AUG 23 Marlins at Nationals

WASHINGTONSterling Sharp, on August 23rd at Nationals Park, had a rough outing as a pitcher for the Marlins in his fourth Major League appearance.

Less than a week later, Sharp is now part of the Washington system once again. Drafted out of Division II Drury of Missouri by Washington in 2016, the right-hander from Michigan was returned to the Nationals after a stint with the Marlins as a Rule 5 player.

Mark Scialabba, assistant general manager, player development, told Federal Baseball on Saturday the 25-year-old was on his way to alternate site Fredericksburg where he will be part of the 60-player pool.

“We’re excited to get him back and continue his development,” Scialabba. “He will hit the ground running.”

Sharp, 25, will be reunited with Michael Tejera, his pitching coach last year at Double-A Harrisburg in the Eastern League.

Tejera is one of the instructors at the alternate site; also on hand is Triple-A manager Randy Knorr, Fresno hitting coach Brian Daubach, and Brad Holman, the Triple-A Fresno pitching coach last year who is now a pitching coordinator in player development.

Last year, Sharp was 5-3, 3.99 in nine starts for Harrisburg while he also made two starts for Auburn in the New York-Penn League and one in the Gulf Coast League.

He struggled with the Marlins, posting an ERA of 10.13 in four games over 5.1 innings with five walks.

“His ability to sink the baseball and get groundballs” is key, Scialabba said.

Sharp is one of the few Division II products to appear in the majors this year. Another one is Atlanta slugger Matt Adams, a product of Slippery Rock in Pennsylvania who saw time with the Nationals in 2018 and 2019.

Two other recent additions to the player pool in Virginia are Jackson Cluff and Drew Mendoza, who were infielders with Hagerstown in the low Single-A South Atlantic League last season. A player has to be on the player pool to be traded this year - and the trade deadline is close at hand.