Pittsburgh - Gift
Ngoepe, who became the first African player to appear in a Major League
Baseball game on Wednesday, marked the occasion by getting a single in his
first at-bat for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Ngoepe, from Polokwane, entered the game playing second
base in the fourth inning of the Pirates 6-5 win over the Chicago Cubs.
John Bell's home run in the sixth inning provided the winning score.
The 27-year-old Ngoepe was recalled by Pittsburgh from their minor league affiliate Indianapolis earlier in the day.
In addition to his hit up the middle of the field in the fourth inning, he walked in the sixth and struck out in the eighth.
Ngoepe was signed at age 18 as a non-drafted free agent in September
2008. In 15 games this season with Indianapolis, he is batting .241 with
four runs batted in.
Ngoepe was rated by Baseball America as the "Best Defensive
Infielder" in the Pirates minor league system each of the last five
He led all International League shortstops in fielding percentage (.984) while playing with Indianapolis last year.