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Pirates sign John Jaso to two-year deal

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Jeff Griffith-USA TODAY Sports

The Pirates have signed John Jaso to a two-year deal.  The left-handed hitting Jaso has played almost exclusively behind the plate in his major league career, but the Pirates announced him as a first baseman and outfielder.  Their obvious intention is to use him to fill their need for a left-handed hitter at first base to complement the right-handed hitting Mike Morse and Jason Rogers.

Jaso fits the Pirates' preference for a solid hitter with contact and on-base skills, rather than a swing-and-miss power hitter.  His career line is 263/361/406, with a K rate only sightly higher than his walk rate.  He's shown more power in recent years, with slugging averages of .430 and .459 the last two years, which he spent with Oakland and Tampa Bay.  Only 226 of his 1857 career plate appearances have come against LHPs, and he's posted only a .542 OPS against them, so it's unlikely he'll start much against them with the Pirates.

Terms of the deal haven't been officially announced, nor has the offsetting 40-man roster move.  Tweets from Ken Rosenthal and Joel Sherman indicate that Jaso will get $4M in each season.

UPDATE:  As noted by Thunder, the Pirates cleared a roster spot by outrighting RH reliever Jorge Rondon to AAA.