Nationals select RHP Taylor Hill from Triple-A Syracuse, DFA Greg Dobbs

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by Amanda Comak

After a 16-inning, marathon 4-2 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Tuesday night, the Washington Nationals added a fresh arm to their arsenal on Wednesday morning, selecting the contract of right-handed pitcher Taylor Hill from Triple-A Syracuse and designating first baseman/third baseman Greg Dobbs for assignment.

Additionally, infielder/outfielder Jeff Kobernus was returned from rehab, reinstated from the 60-day Disabled List and optioned to Triple-A Syracuse, while right-hander Christian Garcia was released.

“We just need length in the bullpen right now,” Nationals Manager Matt Williams said, less than 11 hours after the final out had been made on Tuesday night.

Hill, 25, is 9-2 with a 1.92 in 15 games (14 starts) for Syracuse this season, tossing three complete games, one shutout and picking up one save. The 6-foot-3 right-hander has posted a 7.22 strikeout/walk ratio (65 SO/8 BB), the second-highest mark of his career.

A sixth-round selection of the Nationals in the 2011 First-Year Player Draft, Hill is currently leading the International League in innings pitched (93.2 IP), is tied for first in ERA (1.92) and ranks second in WHIP (0.99).

The right-hander, who got the news from Triple-A manager Billy Gardner Jr., at around 2 a.m. on the east coast, called it a “dream come true,” to be in the Major Leagues. “I’m obviously pumped and pleasantly surprised.”

Hill was named the International League Pitcher of the Week on May 26 of this year after he tossed 11 shutout innings, pitching four innings in relief and earning a save against Columbus on May 19, and following it up with seven scoreless innings in a start against Pawtucket on May 24.

Dobbs, 35, was 6-for-28 (.214) with one double and two RBI in 21 games (three games started) for the Nationals.

Kobernus, 25, went 15-for-55 (.273) in 15 Minor League rehab games, spanning from Single-A Hagerstown to Triple-A Syracuse. He rejoins Syracuse’s active roster for the first time since going on the Disabled List with a fractured left hand on April 12.

Garcia, 28, posted a 2.13 ERA in 13 Major League games with the Nationals in 2012. He was 1-1 with a 2.45 ERA in 10 games (14.2 IP) with Triple-A Syracuse this season.

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