Tuesday, April 22, 2008


The latest Rapids position player signing, switch-hitting outfielder-DH Sambu Ndungidi, has a good backstory.

Ndungidi was drafted by the L.A. Dodgers in 2002 and played two seasons in their chain and had a partial season in the Northern League with the Edmonton Cracker-Cats. He might be more known to serious ball fans through his brother, Ntema, who had a chance to be the first African-born major-leaguer (he was also nearly the first Canadian taken in the first round) before he encountered personal problems. Reading between the lines, you really wonder how well the Baltimore Orioles organization tried to accommodate the elder Ndungidi in his time of need, or if they just decided he was a distraction.

Ntema Ndungidi ended up playing in Can-Am League with Miles Wolff's Quebec Capitales, which might explain why Sambu Ndungidi is getting a shot. He's 6-foot-3, 200 lbs., hits from each side of the plate and he's only 23 years old, although he hasn't played much organized baseball. The Can-Am loop is a second-chance league, so here's wishing him well.

The Rapids' release says that right-hander Adam Hawes is being slotted in as a starting pitcher. The Brampton native (him and Michael Cera, eh) ended up in the bullpen with the Minnesota Twins' Florida State League team last season.

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