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White Sox claim pitcher Maikel Cleto


GLENDALE, Ariz. - The Chicago White Sox have claimed right-handed pitcher Maikel Cleto (Michael CLAY-toh) off waivers from the Kansas City Royals and have designated infielder Jake Elmore for assignment.

Cleto, 24, combined to go 3-5 with a 5.52 ERA (56 ER/91.1 IP) and 89 strikeouts in 35 games (10 starts) last season between Class AAA Memphis in the St. Louis organization and Class AAA Omaha in the Royals system. 

The 6-foot-3, 250-pound Cleto also appeared in one game with the Cardinals (June 5 vs. Arizona) before being claimed off waivers by Kansas City on June 23. He pitched in six games for Licey in the Dominican Winter League, allowing one run on two hits with 13 strikeouts over 9.2 IP (0.93 ERA).

A native of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Cleto has gone 24-40 with a 4.93 ERA (319 ER/582.2 IP) and 508 strikeouts in 174 games (90 starts) over seven minor-league seasons. He also made 13 relief appearances with the Cardinals from 2011-13, allowing 18 runs in 15.2 IP (10.34 ERA) with 26 strikeouts.

Cleto, who will wear uniform No. 39, originally was signed by the New York Mets as a non-drafted free agent on August 10, 2006. He is expected to join the White Sox in major-league camp on Thursday.

Elmore, 26, was claimed off waivers from Houston on November 13, 2013.

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