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Pirates claim Jorge Rondon from Orioles

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Peter Llewellyn-USA TODAY Sports

Via the team's transactions page, the Pirates have claimed righty reliever Jorge Rondon from the Orioles, thus completing a sort of de facto trade -- the Orioles designated Rondon for assignment when they claimed Vance Worley from the Bucs.

This is one of those Pirates pitching pickups that's based more on scouting than on performance. The 27-year-old Rondon struggled with walks while coming through the Cardinals system, and while he began limiting free passes in the minors starting in 2014, he's continued to have control issues in very short stints in the big leagues with the Cardinals, Rockies and Orioles in the past two years.

But -- wait for it -- he throws really hard, with an average fastball velocity slightly over 95 MPH in his big-league career. He's topped at around 100 MPH. The pitch also appears to have a fair amount of downward movement. He also throws a hard slider that comes in at around 87 MPH. Rondon has never been a big strikeout pitcher, but his repertoire might be able to generate some whiffs and ground balls if Ray Searage can figure out what to do with him.

Rondon is out of options this year, so the Bucs will have to decide by the end of Spring Training how much they like him and whether they want to risk losing him. They acquired Arquimedes Caminero last year under similar circumstances, wound up keeping him, and got pretty good results. We'll see whether Rondon works out the same way, or whether he'll end up back on waivers at some point.