Nationals call up Nate Schierholtz, option Michael Taylor

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Outfielder Nate Schierholtz has joined the Nationals for Saturday afternoon’s match-up against the Giants, getting the call-up from Triple-A Syracuse, per CSN Washington’s Mark Zuckerman. Schierholtz was released by the Cubs on August 13 and joined the Nationals as a free agent on August 18, reporting to Syracuse for four games. Nate McLouth was transferred to the 60-day disabled list to make room on the 40-man roster for Schierholtz, also per Zuckerman. The Nationals optioned Michael Taylor back to Syracuse to create 25-man roster space.

Schierholtz provides a left-handed bat off of the bench for the NL East-leading Nationals. The 30-year-old has struggled this season, hitting only six home runs with 33 RBI and a .192/.240/.300 slash line.

However, over his career, Schierholtz has been relatively productive against right-handed pitching. He has a career .722 OPS against right-handers compared to .650 against southpaws.

Cardinals acquire Marcell Ozuna from the Marlins

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The St. Louis Cardinals have acquired Marcell Ozuna from the Miami Marlins. Craig Mish of Sirius XM was the first to report that the deal was done. Ozuna still has to take a physical.

There is no report yet about what the Cards had to give up to get Ozuna, but given that the Cards and Marlins put a deal together for Giancarlo Stanton, the sides certainly have discussed various Cards prospects recently.

Ozuna fills a major need for the Cardinals, who had serious weaknesses in the middle of the order in 2017. Last year their number three hitters hit a combined .246/.338/.425 and their cleanup hitters hit 270/.350/.444. Ozuna, 27, had a fantastic offensive year in 2017, hitting .312/.376/.548 with 37 home runs and 124 RBI in 159 games.

Ozuna made $3.5 million this past season and is due for arbitration this offseason. He is under contractual control through 2019.