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Pirates Transactions

Pirates DFA Three Players Ahead of Opener



Canaan Smith-Njigba, Pittsburgh Pirates

The Pittsburgh Pirates have designated catcher Ali Sánchez, outfielder Canaan Smith-Njigba and left-handed pitcher Jackson Wolf for assignment prior to Thursday’s opener against the Miami Marlins.

Three 40-man roster spots were needed for right-handed pitchers Jared Jones, Hunter Stratton and Ryder Ryan, who cracked the Pirates’ initial 26-man roster.

Sánchez was signed to a split-contract by the Pirates in the offseason. He collected a pair of singles in 16 at-bats during spring training and walked three times. Jason Delay earned a spot on the roster as the backup to Henry Davis over Sánchez to begin the year.

This is the second time Smith-Njigba has been DFA’d by the Pirates in the last two months. The Seattle Mariners claimed him off waivers by the Pirates on Feb. 7 before being designated by the Mariners and re-claimed by the Pirates a short time later.

During Grapefruit League play, Smith-Njigba hit .200 (5 for 25) with three of those five hits going for home runs.

Wolf was acquired by the Pirates from the San Diego Padres at last year’s trade deadline in the deal that sent Rich Hill and Ji Man Choi the other way. The left-hander made eight starts with Double-A Altoona after he was acquired and pitched to a 4.25 ERA. He made one scoreless appearance on the spring.

Additionally, the Pirates placed right-hander Roansy Contreras on the paternity list. To take his place on the roster, left-hander Jose Hernandez was recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis. Hernandez allowed one run in six innings this spring, walked six and struck out nine.

The four players placed on the injured list are all retroactive to Mar. 25. Colin Holderman (illness) and Carmen Mlodzinski (forearm) hit the 15-day IL while Ji Hwan Bae (hip) and Yasmani Grandal (plantar fasciitis) were placed on the 10-day IL.

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