After losing Chase d’Arnaud for 6-8 weeks following thumb surgery the Pirates have added some middle infield depth by acquiring John McDonald from the Diamondbacks, according to Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com.
Rosenthal reported last week that McDonald was on the trading block because Arizona had stockpiled too many light-hitting veteran infielders and preferred to keep Willie Bloomquist and Cliff Pennington.
McDonald is under contract for $1.5 million this season at age 38 and has long been one of the worst hitters in baseball, although his measly .681 OPS in 2012 was actually 73 points above his career average.
Last Thursday, we learned that the MLBPA was challenging the Nippon Professional Baseball posting system, delaying Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani’s move to Major League Baseball. The latest collective bargaining agreement removed a lot of the incentive for players to come to the U.S. by capping pay. Ohtani, for example, can only receive a signing bonus between $300,000 and $3.53 million while his team — the Nippon Ham Fighters — would receive $20 million for posting him.
Jon Morosi reports that the deadline for this issue to be resolved is 8 PM ET on Monday evening. He notes that key NPB officials have worked through the night in Japan to try to reach a resolution. It is possible that even if no agreement is reached, the deadline could be pushed further back.
Ohtani, 23, has become a heralded hitter and pitcher in Japan. At the plate over his five-year career, he has compiled a .286/.358/.500 triple-slash line with 48 home runs and 166 RBI in 1,170 plate appearances. On the mound, he has a 2.52 ERA with a 624/200 K/BB ratio across 543 innings.