Bucs Sign Brandon Mann

The Pirates have signed left-handed pitcher Brandon Mann, according to Baseball America minor league transactions.

Mann (also known as ブランドン by Japanese fans) has pitched in Japan for the last three seasons, and posted a 4.27 ERA with 3.6 BB/9 and 5.7 K/9 in 92.2 inning for the Yokohama DeNa BayStars (2011-2012). In 2013, he was released from Washington Nationals in March and signed with Shinano Grandserows, a team in the Japanese independent league. He had a 4.73 ERA with 41 walks and 62 strikeouts in 72.1 innings. Last month, he pitched in Fukuoka Softbank Hawks' tryouts, but it didn't work.

Mann throws a 90-92 MPH fastball, a mid-80's slider, a high-70s curve, and a 80 MPH change up. Last September, he changed his motion to a sidearm delivery and got more movement on his slider. The lefty has struggled with his control but the mechanical change led to better control for him.

He will likely provide bullpen depth at Altoona or Bradenton.
However, I wouldn't be surprised if he returned to Japan at the some point next season.

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