Tag:Gift Ngoepe
Posted on: March 9, 2009 6:57 am
Edited on: March 9, 2009 7:00 am

Bucs Aren't Looking This Gift Horse in the Mouth

Npho "Gift" Ngoepe is a 19-yo switch-hitting INF for South Africa in this year's edition of the World Baseball Classic and apparently in the Pirates farm system.  He's also a lifelong Oakland A's fan.

From InternationalPastime.com
The switch-hitting shortstop Ngoepe’ s signing with the Pittsburgh Pirates was somewhat overshadowed by the unusual (and seemingly quite gimmicky and desperate) signings of Rinku Singh and Dinesh Patel, the two Indian pitchers who won a reality TV show to get their contracts. Ngpepe is viewed as a project, but has the most potential of reaching the majors of any player on South Africa’s roster. After the Classic, Ngoepe will likely be sent to the Pirates’ Single-A affiliate.

From SFGate.com
South Africa second baseman Npho "Gift" Ngoepe, 19, is a Sotho tribesman who grew up on a baseball field; his mother worked at the clubhouse in Randburg. He's also a longtime A's fan, and he wanted to see Giambi, Eric Chavez and Bobby Crosby.
"On PlayStation, I'll be like, 'Giambi's up, he hits all the home runs, that's big!' " Ngoepe said.



Based on this photo, he needs work on his fielding.
I guess there is something to be said for the Pirates finally addressing their need for better international scouting and talent development under Neal Huntington and Frank Coonelly, but I hope they are concentrating their efforts on the proven areas of Latin America and Asia.


The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com