Nationals sign Ross Ohlendorf to minor league deal

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Washington has one of the best, deepest rotations in baseball, but general manager Mike Rizzo has talked all offseason about wanting to have extra depth on hand and Matt Eddy of Baseball America reports that the Nationals have signed Ross Ohlendorf to a minor-league deal.

Ohlendorf was a solid middle-of-the-rotation starter for the Pirates in 2009 and 2010, throwing 285 innings with a 3.98 ERA, but he’s been injured and ineffective since then.

Last season Ohlendorf got knocked around for a 7.77 ERA in 49 innings for the Padres and his ERA was even worse in 2011, so the 30-year-old right-hander is purely Triple-A depth until proven otherwise.

Blue Jays acquire Gift Ngoepe from the Pirates

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MLB.com’s Gregor Chisholm reports that the Blue Jays have acquired infielder Gift Ngoepe from the Pirates in exchange for cash considerations.

Ngoepe, 27, made his major league debut this past season. Overall, he hit .222/.323/.296 in 63 plate appearances. He mostly played second base, but also spent time at shortstop and third base.

Ngoepe is from South Africa. When he debuted on April 26, he became the second African-born player to play in the majors along with Al Cabrera of the 1913 Cardinals. He had spent parts of eight seasons in the minors prior to 2017.

In case you’re wondering, Ngoepe is pronounced “in-go-pay.”