clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Gift Ngoepe, the first African-born player in MLB, singles in first at-bat

New, comments

Infielder was called up to the Pirates on Wednesday

Pittsburgh Pirates infielder Gift Ngoepe already made history with his call up earlier on Wednesday. Then, in his first at-bat, he made his major league debut even more memorable.

Ngoepe, 27, singled against Chicago Cubs starter Jon Lester in the fourth inning for his first major league hit.

Born in Pietersburg, South Africa, Ngoepe is the first player ever born on the continent of Africa to reach the major leagues.

Known more for his defense, Ngoepe plays mostly shortstop and second base, with some third mixed in. He was named the best defensive infielder in the Pirates system in each of the last five years by Baseball America.

Ngoepe entered Wednesday in a double switch for the Pirates, and remained in the game playing second base.